One of the last surviving independent shops in Aylesbury town centre is celebrating 20 years in business – and its owner has thanked his loyal customers for their support.
Ash Madhani, owner of Ashco based in the High Street, set up the hardware store in 1995.
He said: “The support of our local customers has been crucial to our success.
“It is lovely that people still support their local, independent shops.”
Mr Madhani originally lived in Uganda, but fled to the UK after brutal dictator Idi Amin expelled the country’s Asian population.
He said: “I had to leave Uganda because of the political situation there.
“I came to the UK in 1972 and moved to Aylesbury in 1976 where I managed the Superdrug store.
“In 1985 I opened K Video, a video shop in Walton Court and in 1995 I got the opportunity to open Ashco.
“I like Aylesbury very much and I feel the support of our customers has been crucial to our success.
“I would like to thank all my customers for their support and I think that is how we have been able to survive this long despite the competition from bigger stores.”
The 66 year old runs the shop with his wife Kiran.
He said: “We do so much that other shops don’t and if we don’t have it we will get it for the customer.
“When the customer asks, we say yes.
“My staff provide an excellent service because we believe that the customer is the most important person.”
The store sells a range of household and kitchen ware plus items including toys, crockery and cutlery.
Mr Madhani, who lives in Aylesbury, said: “The town centre has changed drastically mainly through the disappearance of independent shops.
“Our customers range from the very young to the very old and that is one of the most satisfying things.”
The shop officially opened its doors in the High Street on August 1 1995.
Mr Madhani said: “It feels like the last 20 years has gone very quickly!
“I would love to continue for as long as possible, depending on my health.”