Rob Shearsby is not your average window cleaner.
With a Degree in English Literature from Lancaster University and state of the art new equipment and technology in his window cleaning arsenal, gone are the days of hoiking up a ladder with a cloth and bucket, whistling a tune to announce your arrival.
Rob has steadily grown his Morecambe based business Aquabright since he set it up in 2010.
Formerly working for a large cleaning company, he decided to go it alone and invested in new equipment which allows him to keep his feet firmly planted on the ground while cleaning windows up to 60ft high.
Rob, 31, said: “I’d always wanted to work outside, and do something entrepeneurial, so I thought I’d give it a try.
“For the first couple of years I was working alone, but the business has grown to the point where I now employ three members of staff.
“The majority of business comes through recommendation, so it’s grown fairly organically.
“The system itself has been about for 10-15 years, and has steadily become more commonplace. It’s a much safer way of doing things.”
The procedure purifies ordinary tap water using a “Reverse Osmosis filtration system” which extracts carbon, chlorine, dirt and dust and leaves just pure water.
It leaves no detergent residues, consumes algae and dirt and leaves a “streak-free finish”.
The company uses carbon fibre telescopic poles with purposely designed brushes which pump the water at low pressure to heights of up to 60ft. Rob said he uses around 600 litres of water per day for each of his two vans.
He said: “There’s a lot more overheads than just a ladder, but it does a much better job.
“We also clean all the frames, and the main advantage is you can do it from the ground.
“In principle it’s quite simple, but it’s not just a matter of squirting a bit of water at the window.”
Aquabright also does gutter cleaning, using a vacuum, with a camera attached to the end and viewer on the bottom for hard to reach grime.
Rob said the company, which is a member of the National Federation of Window Cleaners and the British Window Cleaning Academy, prides itself on a friendly and professional service and carries out both residential and commercial work.
All the staff recently underwent health and safety training, he said.
“There’s a certain level of trust involved,” he said.
“If someone grumpy turns up to your house, you’re not likely to want them back so it’s important for us to create the right impression.
“We cover up into the Lakes and down to Forton, Burton-in-Lonsdale and those areas, and of course Lancaster and Morecambe.
“It’s literally anything with glass! We’re getting new customers every day and we’ll continue to grow through word of mouth and building relationships.”