A VEHICLE hire company is celebrating 50 years in business at its town centre site.

Central Self Drive has been located on Winwick Street since 1968, and is this year marking half a decade at its home.

Company director Dave Lewis’s granddad founded the car and van hire business in 1964, before moving opposite to Central Station four years later.

Dave’s dad also ran the business before he himself took the reigns.

The 33-year-old said: “I started working here full-time at 16 or 17, but before that my pocket money came from working here at the weekends from the moment I could walk.

“From when I was about four I was out cleaning vehicles in a valet bay.

“We always did family fun days or transport days - I remember sitting on the back of a truck and Roland Rat coming.

“Back then, we used to deal a lot with Liverpool FC and I can remember John Barnes coming in here.

“I went into the workshop and did mechanics until I was about 21, when I moved into the office and onto the board.

“Since then, this has kind of become my child.”

And Dave’s tenure has seen a big growth in the business.

He added: “Ten years ago we were more like a family-run business with about 70 vehicles and turning over about £500,000 a year.

“Now we’re a high-performing small to medium enterprise - we’re up to nearly 300 vehicles with 17 members of staff.

“We have taken on new offices and workshop premises on in the last few years, which enabled us to double in size.

“But we still have our old values - all our policies are all about the local community, and we like to recruit and buy locally.

“Warrington has been good to us, and it’s growing all the time - it’s a great business town and we want to say thank you to the community for supporting us over the years.

“Here’s hoping it will be onwards and upwards for the next 50 years.”