Halifax entrepreneur Gavin inspired to success in business by his dad

Customers outside I Believe I Can Fry at Stump Cross
Customers outside I Believe I Can Fry at Stump Cross

An entrepreneur from Halifax says the death of his father was the catalyst for building his business empire after adding a third company to his portfolio.

Gavin Pettifor, 34, who lives in Sowerby Bridge, recently opened catering trailer I Believe I Can Fry opposite the Stump Cross Inn, and is already a partner in The Cutting Shed with his wife Jodie as well as owning his own joinery company Pettifor S and J.

He said: “My dad passed away in 2010 and that was the kick up the backside I needed to think ‘what do I want to do?’

“That was the worst event of my life, but I met Jodie around the same time so it was kind of bittersweet.

“My dad didn’t have the best upbringing in life and was in children’s homes, but he always worked.

“When he died I became the father figure in the family and I felt I had to be strong for my mum and my brother, plus I’ve got children as well.

“It just made me want to live every day and not let anyone hold me back. I’m a very positive person anyway and I think positivity breeds positivity.

“I would like to think he’d be proud of me - he’d probably be a partner in my businesses!

“I definitely get my work ethic from my parents and hopefully my kids will replicate that in future.”

The Cutting Shed is situated above Gavin’s joinery workshop on Hollins Mill Lane in Sowerby Bridge and has been open a year, while Pettifor S and J opened in 2014.

He said: “Jodie went to college to do hair and beauty and always wanted her own salon, so when I was taking on the workshop I offered to convert the space above it for her. It’s going really well.

“I was a joiner since school and did an apprenticeship, but went into child care when the recession hit in 2008 and became a manager of a children’s home. My friend then found me six months of work in joinery after the children’s home was shut down, although I didn’t really want to leave child care.

“But I’d always wanted to set up my own company and it’s gone from strength to strength.

“We’ve just completed a project for Aldi which involved us working in 92 of their stores across the north of England.”