Plain English at Halfords

Plain English Campaign welcomes a rare opportunity to applaud the motoring industry today when Halfords Autocentres launch their plain English ‘Glossary of garage speak'. This is the first guide of its kind in the motor industry to receive a Crystal Mark from Plain English Campaign.

The guide is a direct result of research carried out for the independent garage network. The research showed a high level of confusion linked to mechanical jargon and highlighted the need for simple and unpatronising language when dealing with motorists.

For many years drivers have faced the task of taking their cars for the yearly MOT (Ministry of Transport test) provoking nearly as much dread as a trip to the dentist. The mechanical jargon that confuses and fills us with dread can cost us anything between a few pounds or many hundreds of pounds. But many of us would have no clue whether it's better to have 'mayonnaise under the cap' or a 'cat that is worn out'.

Marie Clair, spokesperson for Plain English Campaign says, "I can cope better with my 'big end' going if I know what that really means, and what it's going to cost me. But more importantly it's about taking responsibility for safety. Some seemingly complicated mechanical problems might be more dangerous than others, but actually cost less to fix. By explaining many of the terms used by garages, Halfords are driving us all towards greater safety on the roads."

The Halfords Autocentres' plain English campaign begins today and represents a commitment from staff across all garages to consistently use clear language when dealing with customers.

Halfords Autocentres Chief Executive Duncan Wilkes said: "This is about creating an atmosphere where men and women alike feel comfortable that they will be provided with helpful, honest and reliable customer service.
"We know that for motorists, a trip to the garage can come with a sense of dread. Modern cars are complicated and it can be hard to understand what's happened when things go wrong.
"All our staff are dedicated to helping customers and their vehicles and our new plain English guide to garage speak is part of that service. Transparent pricing and language is at the heart of our business. We are there to be the motorists' friend, helping to keep them on the road and get the best deal."

Download a copy of the plain English ‘Glossary of garage speak’ from the Halfords website.

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