Preston barber opens up new shop ... in a Walton-le-Dale pub car park!
A renowned Preston barber has opened his second barber shop after spotting an empty garage in a popular Walton-le-Dale pub car park during lockdown.
Sam Thompson, who has owned Half Guard Barbers on Market Street for three years, first saw the opportunity to expand his business during the lockdown .
The popular White Bull pub in Walton-le-Dale had renovated an unused garage at the bottom of its car park and was advertising the space to barbers in the area.
And with Sam hoping to develop his brand across Lancashire, he made the brave move to take over the space and open his second barbershop just last week.
Sam, 35, said: "I approached the pub and made it into a new barber because it was such a good opportunity that I couldn't turn down.
"This was only possible because of the great support that businesses have gotten from the council during the pandemic. We have been helped all the way through financially, which put me in a good position to be able to evolve my business.
"It is a great location because it is a busy and popular pub that is a focal point for the community. Since we opened, people have been walking past and wanting to come in and have a look."
Having worked for eight years at Church Street Barbers, in the city centre, Sam decided to open his own business just three years ago, which has been thriving ever since.
And after surviving through a difficult year, he reopened his barbershop on April 12 and single-handedly cut the hair of over 120 in the first week alongside managing the Reign Supreme Tattoo shop next door.
He says that because there is little competition in Walton-le-Dale, he is determined to make his new Victoria Road shop a success after hiring new barbers Louis and Jack.
He added: "We had about 50 clients in on our first week of opening the new shop, which is great for a new business in the area. Because there aren't any barbers in the area, it will really help the community who I hope will want to support a small local business.
"Having built a good name for myself in Preston, it is important to me that I give other people an opportunity. Everyone who has worked for me over the years has been an apprentice when they first came through the door.
"The hardest part of the last year has been the stop and start element of things. Just as we spent all our money on being covid secure and offering hand gels, masks and other sanitary equipment, we would be closed down.
"Then after opening again because of the restrictions, environmental health would check over our business and we would have to close again. But, now that we can reopen again, I just want to get my brand out there and continue to expand."
Half Guard Barbers is now available for walk-ins from 10 am until 7 pm.
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