A Cheadle hairdresser has put down his scissors for the final time after deciding to retire. Duncan Cowans, who runs a unisex hairdressers in Cheadle, has retired after 44 years in business.
A Cheadle hairdresser has put down his scissors for the final time after deciding to retire.
Duncan Cowans, who runs a unisex hairdressers in Cheadle, has retired after 44 years in business.
Duncan trained at John Belfield International in Stafford Street, Hanley, where he worked for four years. He then moved into Cumberland House in Cheadle, naming his salon ‘A Cut Above’.
Duncan was then given the opportunity to establish himself in 50, High Street (above Sankey’s Opticians) by Pauline Brunt.
Duncan sealed the deal with Pauline by buying her a schooner of sherry in The Wheatsheaf.
Sadly, only a few months later, Pauline became unwell and was taken into the Dougie Mac. During one visit Duncan asked Pauline: “Is there anything you want?”
In reply, Pauline asked him to raise money for the hospice. Duncan kept his promise, organising a variety of fundraising events including fashion shows and sponsored swims.
Duncan gave his new salon his own name, and Doreen Harvey, a family friend, joined him.
After a few months, Duncan took on his first apprentice, Michelle Lavan. The clientele grew to include many Stoke City players including five international footballers.
Duncan went on to open two more salons, one in Bucknall and another in Alton Towers. At one point, Duncan employed 16 members of staff.
In 1993, Duncan moved his business for the final time and continued to develop his business in his present salon, number 7, Cheadle Shopping Centre.
It was from these premises that Duncan organised major charity events including sponsored cycle rides, the first from Blackpool and the second from the Eiffel Tower, both finishing at the Dougie Mac, and a third from the Arc de Triomphe to Marble Arch.
A sponsored swim covered the 22 miles of the English Channel. Other cycling events included a solo ride from Cheadle to Bovey Tracey in Devon, ‘The Royal Ride’ from Cheadle to Windsor via Sandringham and ‘Boston to York’.
Last year, Duncan organised and led a team of walkers from Wolverhampton to the bet365 stadium in memory of his hero, the late, great Gordon Banks. This would have been Duncan’s final fundraiser if it hadn’t been for Robert Banks, Gordon’s son, who asked Duncan if this was to be an annual event. Duncan’s response was: “I’ll walk it if you will.”
This led to this year’s walk from Chesterfield, Gordon’s first club, to the bet365 stadium, which was his last club. Gordon’s son and his grandson, Matt, joined Duncan’s team of walkers.
Throughout Duncan’s successful hairdressing career, he has managed to raise in the region of £50,000 for the Dougie Mac Hospice.
Duncan said: “I would like to thank everyone who has supported me during my long career, particularly my family, former and present members of staff and also so many of my clients who have become friends.
“I am looking forward to having the time to indulge my interests, cycling, walking, watching cricket and football, as well as volunteering at the Dougie Mac.”
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