A COUPLE who spent five years creating a doggie daycare business with a difference have sold up - and plan to tour the world in a motorhome with their loyal English Bulldogs.
Jason and Elizabeth Brierley took the plunge into the world of canine care in 2014 and saw pooch numbers triple over the course of their business journey.
Now the couple’s well groomed company - along with their adjoining family home - have been sold in a six-figure deal brokered by legal firm Cartmell Shepherd.
Jason Brierley, 44, was the driving force behind the business, while Elizabeth continued her involvement with their one remaining salon.
He said: “My wife and I had a conversation during which we looked at what we valued more - money, or time. We decided that time was far more important and the opportunity was there for us to grab life and live it while we can. You never know what’s around the corner.”
The business - Luxury Kennels at Wood Villa - is based in the small hamlet of Mill Hill near Gretna.
Jason took the decision to open it after he and Elizabeth sold two beauty salons they owned which he had played a role in running.
He had a lifelong love of dogs and decided to turn his passion and know-how into a business. In 2014, the company opened with three kennels.
That grew to five, then seven, and then to ten kennels which was the capacity when the business was sold.
It built a solid reputation for itself based on Jason’s policy of socialising all dogs which stayed at the kennels. And he would post daily images of them gamboling through fields or playing together on social media, so owners could keep tabs on their beloved pets from afar.
“It definitely became something a little different,” said Jason. “We got to the stage where owners would call us to see when we could fit their dogs in, then book their holidays around our availability.
“It was never about the money when the business opened - it was about the lifestyle. Days out in the fresh air; summer nights and winter mornings. I had more leisure time once the dogs were cared for, so it was very enjoyable.
“When it came to selling, the work rate, ethic and attention to detail of Rebecca Toppin from Cartmell Shepherd was second to none. She helped with the process and dealt with so much in a timely manner and took a lot of stress out of the situation.
“There were a few issues towards the end of the deal which need to be sorted, but she tackled them fantastically. It’s so important to get the right person working for you on a deal of this nature as they can be very complex. I was so impressed with Rebecca, and she is now dealing with a number of other matters for me.”
Rebecca is a commercial property law expert at Cartmell Shepherd. She said: “While this is the type of transaction that we deal with on a fairly routine basis, we understand that for the client, it may be the first time they have been through such a process.
“While that wasn't the case for Jason, there were still a number of complicated processes to follow to ensure we got the deal over the line in the time frame set out by the purchasers.
“It’s always a real pleasure to complete a piece of work for a client and to deliver on their expectations. Jason had a wonderful business to sell and it was great to be involved in that process.”
Now the open road beckons for Jason and Elizabeth, along with their dogs Junior and Ruby.
An open-ended journey to Europe is on the cards - and while they will return regularly to see friends and family, a new motorhome is their base and wonders of the world will become chapters in their unwritten future story.
Cartmell Shepherd has a large team of highly experienced property solicitors and the business prides itself on customer care, which is reflected in their recent client feedback, with 100 per cent of clients extremely satisfied or satisfied with the service and 99 per cent of clients say they would recommend the firm to others.