A Family Affair
Still thriving after 50 years in retail, this Kirkham family business is clearly doing something to set it apart from the competition, writes Kate Ford. Photography: Paul Melling
In 1965, a young electrician decided to branch out into electrical goods and started selling them from a shop in Kirkham. Bill Salisbury was familiar with retail because his father, Ralph, had a grocer’s shop just down the road, but selling domestic appliances was certainly a new challenge.
However, it was a challenge for which Bill was clearly ready and, over 50 years later, his son, Will, is now in charge. We meet at Salisbury’s impressive showroom on Garstang Road South in Kirkham, where there’s a quite staggering array of stock on display.
“We’ve been in these premises for over 42 years,” says Will. “It had the space we needed to stock a comprehensive range of all the appliances we sell. People need choice, whether it’s price, function, design or colour, they want to see the options available. Here, we have everything on display and we have the product knowledge to help customers make the right decision.”
It’s safe to say that customer service is paramount to Will and the Salisbury’s team. Alongside the friendly, knowledgeable showroom staff, there’s a team of expert installers and engineers. Once you’ve chosen your appliance, it will be delivered and fitted usually within days, and old appliances removed for a fee much smaller than many of the larger players will charge.
“Our customer service really sets us apart from the competition,” says Will. “It’s hugely important to the whole team. We all enjoy receiving the positive feedback from customers, some of whom have been using us for over 40 years!”
It’s easy to see why people choose Salisbury’s, the product range really is superb. All the leading ‘white goods’ brands are here, including Miele, Siemens, Bosch, Neff and Zanussi, as well as a selection from Ebac, the only washing machines manufactured in Britain. In the TV/audio department, the latest models by Panasonic, Sony and Samsung are showing off their ultra-sharp pictures and sound quality.
One of the most impressive areas of the showroom is the space dedicated to ovens, built-in kitchen appliances and range cookers. There are over 20 range cookers on show here, alongside several fitted kitchen displays showcasing the integrated appliances.
“When a built-in appliance needs replacing or updating, you don’t need to go back to your original kitchen fitter,” says Will. “We stock a full range of built-in appliances – ovens, dishwashers, fridges, fridge freezers, microwaves – and two of our fitters are specialist installers of integrated appliances, so we can complete the whole job for you.”
If you’re thinking it sounds too good to be true, let me share something with you. In the last three years, I’ve purchased a washing machine and a fridge-freezer from Salisbury’s, and I can honestly say its customer service was amongst the best I’ve ever experienced. And the appliances are top notch too!
Salisbury’s Gas and Electrical
Garstang Road South
Kirkham PR4 3BH