Tadcaster businessman Michael Appleyard has seen his firm suffer the devastation of flood and find success of expansion during the three short years of trading.
The 22-year-old former Wetherby High pupil launched Calcaria Stoves on Bridge Street and now looks to a new chapter as he is set to open a new larger showroom at the end of the month.
“In our first year trading we were hit by the floods of 2015, which completely ruined the showroom and warehouse,” said the managing director who chose to open in the town because of its location near York, Leeds and Harrogate.
“Despite all of that, we quickly got back on our feet and kitted out showroom again and were open within two weeks.”
He added: “We have had such a success with the business we are now looking to expand and move two doors down to a retail unit on the high street which is four times the size of our current unit.”
The retailer of designer stoves and fireplaces, whose background is in engineering, added that he found the floods tough and the future looked in doubt.
“On the first moment I re-entered the shop after the flood, the whole scene of devastation really did cast some doubt in my mind, but I did not let this become stuck in my thoughts.
“The whole of our downstairs showroom, which we had just finished, was ruined as were all the stoves and displays. Everything had to be replaced.”
Despite reopening within weeks of the flood, trade suffered as the town struggled in the aftermath and because it was split after the collapse of the bridge over the River Wharfe but Michael said he was determined to make his business succeed.
“I had poured everything I had into this, so I really wasn’t prepared to let it go without a fight and I’d probably say the whole spirit of the town itself and the neighbouring shops, and community spirit helped too,” added Michael who employs a showroom sales assistant.
He puts his business success down to stubborn determination which has gained him customers throughout the area and across the country.
The new store, which will open on January 27, will stock an extensive range of gas fires, marble fireplaces, electric fires and suites as well as gas and electric stoves.
“We will still have a massive solid fuel section on the ground floor but the rest of the store will be dedicated to other products.”
He hopes the larger store and his determination will result in greater success.