Steven (46) and Anne (44) Gallacher decided to purchase a Wilkins Chimney Sweep franchise after meeting owners Peter and Louise Harris at a franchise exhibition held at ExCel in London in February 2011.
Steven had recently taken voluntary redundancy from his job as a senior manager in the Home Office and Ministry of Justice; Deputy head teacher Ann has been a primary school teacher for over 20 years and will continue to teach, whilst helping Steven with the administrative tasks of their new business.
What made you buy a franchise business?
'We had always wanted to run our own business but were conscious of the risks involved; we welcomed the support and experience that buying an established business model gave us; it allowed us to ‘hit the ground running’ and provide a first-class service from our very first day of trading.’
What made you buy a Wilkins Chimney Sweep franchise?
‘Peter and Louise struck us as being an honest team, providing an essential but often forgotten community service. We liked their honesty; they did not promise instant profits, but what they did offer us was a long-established and experienced parent business with good support. Just what we were looking for.’
What are you looking forward to about running your own business?
‘We are both so excited about the challenge of running our own business, knowing that the key factors in our success will largely be down to our own hard work and dedication. We are looking forward to the freedoms, balanced by the inherent responsibilities, of working for ourselves, and eventually reaping the rewards of our labour.’
What are your plans for the next 12 months?
Over the next 12 months our focus will be on developing the business as laid out in the manual, to ensure we have the essential building blocks in place to provide the best service we can for our new customers. Essentially chimney sweeping is an affordable, repeat service that keeps people safe; most people are aware that the burning of wood is the most eco- friendly method of heating our homes and businesses, and combined with recent fuel price rises, we hope many more people will re-open their fireplaces and enjoy coming home to a real fire once more.
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I liked the idea of working for myself doing something more hands on than I had been used to as an ex-surveyor. Franchising gave me professional backup, training and an established name to use.
WILKINS CHIMNEY SWEEP have been very supportive in providing both practical training, and also advice on how to run a business with accounting and tax information.
Build a sustainable, ethical, saleable and scalable business
Annual repeat business with excellent cash flow!
We are the only bfa accredited chimney sweeping franchise