Ben Morris-Spicer

He Liked It So Much, He Bought a Franchise!

In the final stages of renovating their home, Ben and his wife decided they wanted a modern, energy-efficient, and stylish window covering. So, they decided that interior shutters were the perfect match for all their requirements.

They met with Gene Astell of Shuttercraft in St Albans, and fell in love with the look and feel of the Shuttercraft products.

Ben had been project managing their property renovation and looking after the family whilst his wife carried on with her career. During this time, him and Gene agreed that if ever he needed any help installing his shutter orders, he would be interested in working for him.


Man in blue shirt fitting window shutters


After the pandemic, Gene got in touch and Ben began working with him a few times a week. However, the orders were coming in quickly, so this increased to a full-time job.

Ben loved the entire process – the customer interaction, the installations, and surveying and sales visits and knew from his previous business experience that the Shuttercraft franchise was a robust model with lots of potential.

Ben is now running his own extraordinarily successful Shuttercraft franchise business in Bedford!

He attributes his profound success to three things; the fact that he purchased a business that had been set up to be operationally efficient and sales driven; the support of the Shuttercraft head office; and  his broad range of business experience.

Mark Richardson

Why I Bought a Shuttercraft Franchise

For more than 30 years, Mark Richardson had enjoyed a career as a successful salesperson in the motor trade. His positive nature and soft-sell approach saw him bounce back from three redundancies, but at the age of 52, Mark finally decided to do something for himself.

He attended a franchise exhibition where he first came across Shuttercraft. Having recently had shutters fitted in his own home and been very impressed, he was sold on the concept.

“I’d considered another shutter franchise, but what attracted me the most to Shuttercraft was how this had the potential to quickly become a management franchise.”

Man wearing shuttercraft uniform


Mark was determined to build his own business that didn’t rely on storing or wasting stock, that was cash positive and that he could take a back seat in further down the line while enjoying a healthy income, and then possibly sell for a lump sum. Shuttercraft ticked all of the boxes.

Mark is also a self-taught DIYer and has renovated four properties in the past. With his partner being an accountant, he is also confident with the business reporting side of things too.

“Technology is definitely my weakness,” said Mark. “Thankfully there are people on the Shuttercraft team that will help me with that, especially the digital advertising and website.”

Nigel Phillips-Luke

From Royal Navy Diver to Business Owner

Nigel spent eleven years in the Royal Navy working within Warfare Operations, and then as a diver. He then spent around 3 years working within IT recruitment, which lead him into the Project Management environment, where he spent the last 12 years working as a project manager for several organisations.

When he decided that he wanted to step away from his employed position and own something for himself, he wanted to maximise his own potential and enjoy being his own boss around his young family.

Franchising seemed like the best option, as it minimises some of the risk element of starting out on your own as you become part of an established organisation and brand with proven processes and procedures.


Shuttercraft winchester owner stood next to van#

Man putting shutter sample into a kit bag, stood next to his van


“I embarked on my search and researched the area thoroughly. I registered with multiple organisations out there which are associated to the BFA. I talked with a variety of franchisors until I was comfortable enough to take the next step.”

That next step was Shuttercraft UK, based at Micheldever. Since Shuttercraft is just down the road, this allowed Nigel to easily meet up with the senior management, find out how the teams work and fully understand the franchise operation.

“The company also manufactures shutters under the S:CRAFT brand and utilises their extensive market knowledge so that franchisees are provided with the highest levels of support, including an on-going marketing programme.”

Simon Moody

From Teacher to Successful Business Owner

Simon Moody was already at a crossroads in his life when his wife’s love of reality show ‘Made in Chelsea’ suddenly led to him finding the perfect business opportunity in the Shuttercraft franchise.

“My wife was obsessed with the home interiors featured on the show and really wanted to look in to getting shutters,” said Simon.

“I then found someone online, who happened to be the Shuttercraft franchisee in Bristol, and he told me how he’d never been happier. I instantly wanted to know more.”

Man wearing Shuttercraft uniform

Four years before this, Simon gave up his 20-year career in teaching, wanting to take control of his own destiny. He took a year out to focus on writing, which included freelancing for the BBC, and then took a job with Sky, while looking for the right opportunity.

A right-brain creative person, Simon was not particularly detail-driven and had limited experience with practical DIY.

Simon said: “I just knew I wanted to get out of being employed and being tied to a desk, but I was terrified of working for myself, had no idea about setting up a business or how to fit shutters! But what appealed to me was the ability to take control of my own destiny and at my own pace in a growing market.”

His business is now giving him the life he wanted: “Building my Shuttercraft business was about being able to control how and when I worked and the ability to get the work/life balance I wanted.” said Simon.

Steve Hubbard

Military Man to Business Man

Steve served seventeen years in the Airforce as an Aircraft Electrical Technician working on a selection of fast jets and helicopters, in both active squadrons and maintenance bays up and down the country.

“I dodged rockets in Iraq, sipped cocktails in Cyprus and endured cold winters guarding the gates in Scotland.”

Steve’s military career was flying high when sadly an accident forced him to make a career change.

“My career was ended by a skiing accident during winter training that injured my spine and left me with neurological issues. Finding work as a civilian was hard, new industries all wanted experience and I was too old to be an apprentice.”



two men wearing shuttercr


“I was offered some very nice opportunities offshore and several good placements away from home. But my heart was set on going back to Norfolk with my family and my injuries would never allow me to take on a physically demanding role.”

After taking the step to buy a franchise, Steve can finally prioritise his family, while working for himself. “We have now had the Norwich franchise for two years. We have nearly paid off that loan and have been living comfortably.

More importantly, we have been building up a great reputation in the area and our lives are our own. I work from home and get to be part of my family every day. If my health is suffering I have no one to answer to.”

“We already had the experience, and we are very proactive, but for those who need more guidance, the Shuttercraft franchise team is there for you. I would definitely recommend a Shuttercraft franchise to veterans looking to get a foot hold in civilian live and start a family business.”

Looking for your next challenge?

Are you an ambitious, customer-focused professional?
Do you have experience in managing staff and budgets?

Shuttercraft Franchise would love to hear from you!

Book a FREE Survey


Request A Callback