New spark for solicitor Martin Firmin as he quits law and plugs into career change
At the age of 63 after a lifetime career in law, solicitor
Martin Firmin decided to retire.
It was not easy getting out of the law. But once it was sorted,
Martin didn't head straight for the golf course to begin a life of
Instead, he embarked on a dramatic change of career - as an
"I used to work 14-hour days," he says. "I'd had enough of law.
You can only do the same thing for so long and retain your
But the grandfather of eight, who ran his own practice in
Rochester, says although he had tired of his profession, he had no
desire to stop working.
Martin, pictured left, explains: "I'm very active for my age.
Why should life finish at 65? I see myself having an ongoing career
for at least 10 years, maybe more."
"I've never been very practical but I've always wished I was. I
wanted to do something that would be handy around the house. I used
to avoid anything electrical like the plague but I thought it would
be good to have the knowledge for myself and my family.
"I wanted to do something useful in my retirement that could pay
He decided to retrain with New Career Skills, which specialises
in retraining people who change careers late in life for jobs as
plumbers, electricians, as well as in renewables and
microgeneration. Martin started his course in October, finished a
few weeks ago, and has just completed a work experience
He is now planning to set up his own electrical company and
returning to New Career Skills to learn plumbing.
Martin adds: "I used to dream about being able to go home and
relax and not have to think about other people's problems. That's
the beauty of this job, especially if I work for a contractor."
He would encourage anyone thinking about a career change,
however old they are, to go for it.
"I'd say 'do it'," he says. "I wish I'd done it 10 years ago. I
did wonder if I'd left it too late when I started the course but
being out on site I don't feel that way at all. I'm really excited
To find out more about retraining with New Career Skills call
free on 0800 037 9934 or visit www.newcareerskills.co.uk.