Eamonn at Vectis Holiday Homes

Dove Court on Shanklin’s Crescent Road is about to welcome holiday makers as well as residents. The building houses five holiday apartments and four residential flats. It’s the result of a £1.1m investment and four years of work by Eamonn Fetton and his wife Sue, who bought the derelict hotel site in 2013.

“We wanted to make something where people could ‘stay in style’ – that’s been our catchphrase,” Eamonn says. “Until 2008 I was director of education and employment at a large charity, overseeing special schools and care homes across the UK while based in London. I also owned some buy-to-let properties in the city. I then had an opportunity to take redundancy and pursue property which had always been an interest of mine.

“I was confident that we’d get there although I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when we started. My mentor Fiona has been very helpful. It’s very useful to be able to share your own vision with someone and to get feedback that is supportive as well as realistic. The mentoring is on-going and Fiona has been able to put me in contact with so many other like-minded business people.

“It’s been a tremendous experience. Sue is totally blind and she works full-time as a civil servant. She also manages the website and takes bookings. I’m technically registered as blind too, although I do have some useful residual vision. I’ve still chosen all of the colour schemes in the building for example. Working with the architect and overseeing the team working on-site has been interesting at times but we all have a good rapport!

“When I was 30 I didn’t have the experience to do this and I certainly didn’t have the capital either, so being over 50 has its advantages. It’s great to be my own boss. I’ve always enjoyed work and the beauty of this is that I can retire whenever I want and have the flexibility to be able to choose how much I want to work.”

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