Sarah turns to nostalgia to clean up business

Sarah Legge, managing director of Maid to Butler Housekeeping Services.
Sarah Legge, managing director of Maid to Butler Housekeeping Services.

A NORTHUMBERLAND housekeeping business with a 1950s twist is looking to recruit new staff after a successful first year.

Sarah Legge, from Choppington, was made redundant from her post at Northumberland County Council in 2011. With two young children, she wanted more time with her family but still needed to earn a living.

So the 36-year-old set up Maid to Butler Housekeeping Services, which now employs six members of staff from across the county, including Morpeth, and is looking to recruit more.

The business has a 1950s theme and offers a number of different packages from housekeeping and handymen to options for parents and bachelors/bachelorettes, who may be struggling without mum in their first home.

“The 1950s theme is a unique selling point and it tells people we have a good work ethic,” said Sarah.

“It’s about having pride in your work, and letting people into your home is a big deal.

“People want their houses to be as clean as in the 1950s but everyone works so hard these days they don’t get a chance – we will make your home as spick and span as a 1950s home.”

The 1950s theme even stretches to a housekeeping tip from the era being posted on the company’s Twitter account (@maidtobutler) each day.

Sarah, who lives with husband Scott and sons Harrison, four, and 19-month-old Oliver, is pleased with her new lifestyle and the fact she is creating jobs and using local businesses as suppliers.

“Women nowadays stretch themselves so far,” she said.

“I wanted to be more flexible for my family but still needed to bring in an income.

“A lot of our staff have been made redundant themselves.

“Some of them are more mature and if they weren’t working for Maid to Butler, they might find it difficult to find work.

“They have come from very stressful jobs and they absolutely love it.”

And now the time has come for growing the business.

“The plan is to become the biggest and best housekeeping service for Northumberland, but to do it properly, we have to do it steadily,” said Sarah.

“I’m now ready to take more people on.”

Maid to Butler also offers housekeeping apprenticeships with Northumberland College.

Others have been paying attention to Maid to Butler’s progress as well – the company was runner-up in the Best New Business category at the 2011 Women Into the Network (Win) Awards for the North East in November.

“They recognised that we had such good customer feedback and offered a unique service to people,” Sarah said.

For more information, visit 0845 519 7731.