"I have found the team at head office to be very, very good"

London House provides franchise owner Alfred Eccles with the perfect opportunity to mix running his own business with pursuing his various personal interests

For Alfred Eccles running his London House franchise has enabled him to dictate his working hours, allowing him to pursue his numerous hobbies, which include owning and driving five classic cars and carrying out restoration work on antiques. "I have many outside interests that take up a lot of my time," Alfred confirms. "Being my own boss means that I can work to my own schedule which enables me to fit my personal interests around running my London House business.

"As well as providing me with flexible working hours I enjoy the work involved in running a London House business. I like the challenge of being thrown into a very complicated situation for a short period of time, which you have to resolve."

Alfred had no previous experience in investigation work before joining London House. "I had been working abroad in the hotel and catering industry and when I moved back to the UK I found it difficult finding a position in my line of work at the same seniority level," he explains. "I decided I wanted to run my own business and I began looking into various franchise opportunities.

"I chose London House because of the integrity of the company and I liked the fact that the team at head office have a lot of experience in the investigation industry. Additionally, I thought the London House business model was more suitable to what I was looking for as it did not have as many overheads as other franchises, and I also found the work involved in running a London House franchise to be intellectually stimulating."

Like all new London House franchise owners Alfred was provided with two weeks of training prior to launching his business in 2006. "During the training I was provided with a manual that covered all the work we do and how it should be done. I was also taught about the legal aspect of the services we provide and the necessary documents we have to create.

"Additionally, while on the training course at head office I was provided with my first two jobs, which meant that when I launched I could hit the ground running. Since my launch head office has often provided me with work and I have found the team at head office to be very, very good - they are brilliant people."

Keen to continue running his business for as long as possible, Alfred has no plans to retire. "I can see myself running my London House business for as long as I am fit and able," he reveals. "All I will have to do is adjust my workload to suit my circumstances and it is a business I can easily see myself carrying on long pass retirement age."

Reported by Derin Ibrahim

London House network of offices

Brighton, Crawley & Redhill
Bristol & Bath
Bromley & Croydon
Central & West London
Chelmsford & Southend
Exeter & Torquay
Harrow & North West London
Ipswich & Colchester
Maidstone & North Kent
Milton Keynes
Nottingham & Lincoln
Preston, Blackburn & Fylde
Southampton & Portsmouth
St Albans
St Helens, Wigan & Warrington
Surrey & North Sussex
Tonbridge & Canterbury
Wolverhampton & Shropshire