CLIFF McKellar could never have envisaged the journey he would undertake when he became Sunshine Windows’ first employee.
Today Cliff is joint owner of the company, that is based on Dukinfield’s Ravenscroft Industrial Estate and which this year celebrates its 30th anniversary.
Cliff said: “When I started as an employee on a Government training scheme, I never dreamed it would one day be my company.
“It is hard to believe that I went from sweeping the floors when I started to owning the business.”
Cliff and Warren Mallard took over the company in December 2016 when founders Rob Jackson and Brian Clayton retired.
Warren’s involvement is also unusual as he was a customer who took over the company.
He said: “I used to buy windows off them and Rob laughed and joked for a couple of years about me eventually buying it.
“I walked in one day to pay a bill and Rob asked if I would buy it with Cliff. I think it would have shut had they not found a buyer.”
Warren still owns Mallard Fencing that is run by his mother, June.
And in a sector, where companies come and go with regularity, Sunshine Windows has stood the test of time having initially been set up by Rob and Brian in a small unit under the railway arches in Stalybridge manufacturing uPVC windows and doors.
Cliff said: “We had one saw, one welder and one bench for the first couple of years, but were able to expand when we moved into our current home in 1991.
“Today we have four on the shop floor, two fitters and three people in admin.”
Cliff explained why Sunshine Windows has been successful, explaining: “We are local people, honest and offer good quality windows and good quality installations.
“Customers know they are dealing with the owners when they ring for a fitting as it will be Warren who will pay the visit to measure up.
“Customers can ring any time day and night and we will answer the phone.”
And when the windows and doors are fitted or conservatories erected, they are also getting experience as brothers Shaun and Jonathan Ratcliffe have each been with the company for more than 25 years.
Cliff added that the majority of windows, doors and conservatories for residential homes, shops and commercial premises are built in-house at our manufacturing facility.
He continued: “The market is evolving and it is about finding things that stand out from the rest, which is why we are currently looking to manufacture a more bespoke composite door.”