Calibre Cleaning was started in 1997 by Karen Thomas, then a mum of three young children who needed to find a job that fitted in with their needs.
She was good at cleaning and knew there was commercial work to be had and so she began, first working from home.
Karen secured a couple of small commercial contracts in Ashford who are still loyal customers, and carried out cleaning in the evening or at weekends.
Wanting to give a professional service, Karen learnt how to clean professionally on a course run by BICS at Swaleside Prison; it was the only course in her area and so she learnt her trade with Category A and B prisoners who were on the course to learn skills for rehab, rehabilitation and to help them enter the workplace after their sentences were complete.
Prisons have large expanses of floors so there was plenty to practice on.
When the children were older, Karen looked for larger clients, moved into an office, took on more cleaning staff and steadily grew the business.
Calibre Cleaning moved to its current premises in Ashford in 2011, where they have a management office, plus a warehouse to store cleaning materials ready to load onto vans for jobs.
The company ethos is to offer exceptionally high standards at a fair cost, look after staff, communicate with clients and be environmentally-minded and sustainable wherever possible.