A mum-of-three is opening a pioneering eco-friendly laundry service in Penwortham.
Bubbly Alison Cannon is to launch Prima Master Dry Cleaners’ first ever franchise, following a £60,000 investment in a new shop fit out on Liverpool Road.
The first of its kind in the town, the service will use state of the art ‘wet care’ technology to clean clothes to the highest standards, without the harmful chemicals used in traditional dry-cleaning.
Prima Master Dry Cleaners already has seven managed outlets in Lancashire and Merseyside including two which opened in Liverpool city centre in April.
The launch of the company’s first franchise in mid-May is a fresh start for Alison, who has spent the last two decades raising her children and caring for her elderly mother.
Alison is looking forward to going into business and working alongside her daughter Hannah, 24, who she will employ to help introduce the eco-friendly brand to Penwortham.
The 54-year-old from Lydiate in West Lancashire, has spent the last few months training in Prima Master Dry Cleaners headquarters in Ainsdale near Southport, to learn the techniques which keep fabrics looking their best.
She’s learning the trade from successful businesswoman Natasha Davies, who set up Prima Master Dry Cleaners 15 years ago and now has seven branches across the North West including three in Liverpool city centre.
The business specialises in cleaning delicate fabrics such as wool, leather and silk, so they are expert at helping breathe new life into designer label clothes, wedding dresses, soft furnishings such as curtains and even fabric shoes such as Ugg boots.
The secret lies in pioneering wet care machines made by cleaning experts Miele, which use water instead of chemicals to clean clothes. A non-toxic biodegradable detergent is used to help remove tough stains.
Alison said: “I don’t think people realise how many chemicals are used in regular dry cleaning. This system uses water, so it’s very clean and green, and that’s important to me.
“It’s very gentle on fabrics and kind to the environment. I try to be green like everyone else but it’s hard in this day and age, so having a business with the right technology do the hard work for you has got to be a good thing.”
She added: “It’s very satisfying seeing things go in and come out nice and clean and fresh. There are lots of designer brands out there these days which need specialist cleaning care, so they come up very well.”
The new Penwortham franchise will give Alison a new lease of life, as she was previously a full time mum, and then a carer for her own mum before she sadly passed away following a battle with Parkinsons’ disease.
Alison said: “Mum had gone, and I was working part time in my partner’s business but I wanted a new challenge. I really want to have my own independence.
I started Googling what franchising opportunities were out there and found Prima. I decided to be brave and went along to an open day to find out more.
“You only get one chance in life, and I thought this is mine!”
“It’s going to give me independence, and stability for the future. As a franchisee I’ll be running my own business, but with the back-up of the experience and expertise of the Prima Master Dry Cleaners team.”
Alison was impressed by the package offered to potential franchisees by the Prima Master Dry Cleaners team. “I already knew the Prima brand and I wanted to work with a reputable company, she said.
“They’ve had a long history and have built up a lot of experience over the years so it’s a proven model and I have confidence in the brand.
“As soon as I met Prima team I knew I wanted to work with them. They are really hands on and I know they will give me a lot of support to make a success of the business.
“The whole support package is great quality for any franchisee, with top of the range Miele machines and the experience of the Prima team.”
Alison is excited about her move to Penwortham with daughter Hannah. She said: “Both of my sons went to University in Preston and so we pass through Penwortham regularly. It’s a really nice High Street with lots of cafes. It’s a lovely area.
Alison and her daughter Hannah have previously worked together in Alison’s partner’s tropical fish shop in Burscough. Alison said: “Hannah really likes working in a family business. We get on well she has a keen eye for detail and really likes working with the public so she is looking forward to it too.”
It’s the latest in a series of exciting developments for Prima Master Dry Cleaners, which this month opened their sixth and seventh managed launderettes in Liverpool city centre, in Fenwick Street and Tithebarn Steet.
The company, launched 15 years ago has its headquarters in Ainsdale. It also has managed outlets in Aintree, Crosby, Maghull, and Old Hall Street Liverpool.
The company was launched in 2002 by fashion fan Natasha, who moved to the UK from Greece where she ran a factory manufacturing clothes.
Natasha said: “I’ve always been into fashion.
“I had a factory manufacturing clothes in Greece and I know how important it is for fabrics to be well cared for, so it was a natural fit to go into wet care cleaning.
“Because we don’t use chemicals, we’re not only promoting a healthy environment but also we make sure our clients’ fabrics are soft on sensitive skin.
“We’ve built up a lot of expertise over the years and we decided the best way to expand was to launch a series of franchises, with Penwortham as our first.”
“Alison is fantastic, we knew straight away she would be great. She’s very hard working and she’s got such a lot of passion.”
Natasha is keen to speak with other potential future franchisees for Prima Master Dry Cleaners across the UK.
She said: “Maintaining a close working relationship with our franchisees allows us to maintain the best possible quality and service and maintain the integrity of the brand.
“We’re really excited about the future, and especially excited for Alison as she launches the business in Penwortham.”
For more information about Prima Dry Cleaners please visit: primamasterdrycleaners.co.uk or find them on Facebook: @PrimaMasterdryCleaners
For information about franchising opportunities with Prima Master Dry Cleaners visit: www.primafranchise.co.uk