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Wilkins Chimney Sweep franchisee in final of 2022 Scottish Ex-Forces in Business Awards

Wilkins Chimney Sweep franchisee in final of 2022 Scottish Ex-Forces in Business Awards

Kris Mclernon, Lanarkshire franchisee, tipped in 'New Service Leaver' category

One Wilkins Chimney Sweep franchisee is cleaning up more than chimneys, having reached the finals of the Scottish Ex-Forces in Business Awards.

After 14 years in the army as a recovery mechanic, Kris Mclernon left the forces in 2020. Taking advantage of a pandemic ‘no-money down’ scheme, he bought his franchise in 2021 and has been very busy in Lanarkshire offering a range of services. Kris now sweeps open chimneys, wood-burning stoves, Agas, Jetmasters, Rayburns and biomass boilers and fits cages caps and cowls to homes and businesses.

Operations manager, Richard Bryan, who trained Kris, was not surprised to see him succeed.

He said: “I knew he was going to be good from the very start of training. Kris is organised focused and disciplined. He picked it all up very quickly. He regularly uses the company WhatsApp group, picking the brains of the other franchisees, who have been running their own businesses and sweeping chimneys for many years.”

In just six months of operation, Kris has been turning heads. Wilkins’ franchise manager, Lisa Kimber, is among them.

She said: “He is one of the most impressive franchisees we have ever seen and we’re sure his military background is partly responsible for that success. We are absolutely thrilled Kris has reached the finals of the awards and we wish him all the luck in the world, he thoroughly deserves it.”

Kris himself acknowledged it could be hard work but spoke highly of life as a franchise. He said: “Unlike a regular nine-to-five job, when you run your own business, you never switch off, but equally I have so much more flexibility in my life. If I want some time off to be with my daughter or attend a special event, I can, that is a major plus point for me; my diary and my day are my own. I would thoroughly recommend anyone who is leaving the forces to consider a Wilkins Chimney Sweep franchise.”

 

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