Crosby really is the business
This pretty coastal town has an irresistible pulling power for people wanting to set up their own business
and that’s good news for locals and visitors
Crosby was declared one of the UK’S best places to live in a survey by The Sunday Times and that certainly strikes a chord with the people who have decided to set up their homes and businesses in this lovely coastal town.
One of them is florist, Claire Smithwick. She chose it over an offer from The Queen’s household. ‘I was offered the post of supervisory florist at Buckingham Palace,’ says Claire, who runs the Your Flower Company. ‘The Queen takes her own florists with her when she moves between residences, so it was very tempting. But I wanted to start a family and, to me, the best place to do that was my home town. Besides, it’s a good place to start a business.’
Claire, who had previously worked as a senior florist for The
Dorchester Hotel, adds: ‘I like my flowers to be a little unusual. I do everything from hand tying small bouquets to creating huge flower walls for commercial premises and weddings. The only downside is that ladders and scaffolding are involved and, as I’m only 5ft tall, I’ve had to train myself not to look down.’
Flowers and plants are said to have a calming effect but, as some of Allison Devine’s clients would be inclined to eat them, she has had to declare her business a plant-free zone. Bella and Buster’s is a dog grooming salon and clients travel many miles to enjoy her procedures from baths and blow dries to brush outs and fragrance spritzes!
‘Almost all dogs love a spot of pampering but they do have to get used to it and that’s why I began my Play and Learn Puppy sessions. We play with them and gently introduce them to the grooming process. It usually takes three sessions to accustom them but always just the one session for me to fall in love,’ says Allison who advises that owners don’t stay during Play and Learn but who always sends anxious owners a photograph of their puppy having fun.
Allison had spent most of her working life in retail management but decided to gain the highest possible qualifications in dog grooming and animal first aid before following her heart and making a career change and she’s not the only Crosby business person to do that.
For 13 years, Pat Moore was a primary school teacher but during all that time, he harboured a dream of opening the area’s first micropub. He took the leap in October 2013 and just two years later his micropub, The Liverpool Pigeon, had scooped the Liverpool and District CAMRA Pub of the Year.
‘Crosby was the perfect place. It’s lively and there’s a great community spirit,’ he said.
‘We keep a good selection of ales with tasting notes for those who want to know more but the one question we’re always asked isn’t about the beers at all: it’s why the pub is called The Liverpool Pigeon and no, it’s nothing to do with The Liver Birds. The Liverpool Pigeon was a real pigeon, in the collection of the Earl of Derby. It’s in the