A married couple have started a new Heights Farm Premium Pet Foods franchise in Lancashire.
Alison and Steve Critchley, who have been married for more than 31 years and live in the Rossendale Valley with their Saluki, Chance, have set up the franchise delivering premium quality pet food door to door to customers in the Preston area.
The new business forms part of Bolton-based Heights Farm Premium Pet Foods’ operation, which has seen rapid expansion in the North in the past six months.
Alison and Steve, from Helmshore, have run various businesses over the years and have also had their separate careers. Together they owned a grocers and off licence in Church, just outside Accrington, and for 22 years Alison has worked as a teaching assistant in the primary sector. Steve also worked in transport for more than 40 years, for the last 15 years as the owner of his own road haulage company.
Alison said: “I have always loved animals, especially dogs, so I then started to look at different franchises with animals in mind. Quite a few left me disappointed and I began to lose interest in ever finding the right one.
“Then in February this year we saw Stephen, the Founder of Heights Farm, and chatted for a while about his products, we got our dog a sample or two and went home. We then went on their website to find out more about their hypoallergenic food range for Chance and saw that there was an opportunity to buy a franchise and downloaded a prospectus. We read all about it and were so impressed at how the company had grown from their own beloved dog, Milo, having allergies. At this point we were already interested.
“The following month, March, we went back to the Farmers’ Market in Helmshore and spoke to Carole, who is the franchisee for the BB postcode area. We chatted to her for a while, asked lots of questions and she told us the PR area was available and to give them a ring. So we arranged a meeting and more or less straight away decided this was the opportunity I’d been looking for.
“Stephen and Sarah say that the third time you see Heights Farm you’re more likely to buy something but for us the third time we saw them we bought a franchise! I think one of the things that impressed us the most was how Heights Farm Pet Foods is a family-run business and the passion they all have for what they are doing and I wanted to be part of that family.”
Company founder Stephen Ward said: “Heights Farm has enjoyed steady and consistent growth through word of mouth. The model is based on a personal, one-to-one service, with unique products, not available on the high street, at a keen price and giving outstanding customer care levels, with a convenient delivered to the door service.”
Heights Farm Premium Pet Foods supplies nationally with a next-day delivery service and internationally within two-three days delivered by its courier network and offers free delivery in parts of Lancashire, Yorkshire and Manchester via its fully-liveried and kitted out Ford Transits.
Source: Pet Business World