Did anyone order a Beresy’s?” It seems that lots of people are using the local delivery company regularly and it is going from strength-to-strength.

Employing 20 people, Beresy’s Deliveries was set up in 2000 by Enniskillen-man Gareth Beresford.

He was only 17 when he noticed a need for a delivery service that would not only bring take-aways to local homes; but milk, bread, cigarettes, alcohol and prescriptions too.

“When I was a cub, I was always doing messages for the neighbours so I was used to it,” Gareth explains. “When I got my driving licence I started working as a delivery driver for the Feast House take-away on Head Street. That’s when I noticed a need for it; people were always asking for a pint of milk or cigarettes to come with their take away,” he explains. “I put out a business card with my mobile number on it and that’s how it started.” Helped by his wife Lousie and two other family members, Gareth is pleased to note that “it just seems to have grown from there”. He never took any bank loans or sought assistance from Invest NI or any other small business support providers. Instead, he preferred to save before buying a new item e.g. a van. “I just think, if it all goes pear-shaped in the morning, you owe nothing to anybody. I prefer to pay as I go.” Initially, Beresy’s Deliveries consisted of Gareth, his car and a mobile phone. “Word-of-mouth meant that we started to grow and we started to get busier,” Gareth recalls. He moved from cars to vans which allowed him to deliver bigger items and to show off the Beresy’s logo to greater effect. “We definitely noticed a big increase in trade after the vans went on the road.” He began renting an office out the Sligo Road but is now based on Queen’s Street. “I always take it step-by-step and one day at a time,” Gareth says. He now has 10 company vans, one lorry (which can deliver pallets) and one larger transit van that can do house removals and furniture delivery.

Repeat customers have helped the business, Gareth notes. They know that a delivery within the town is £3 and that Gareth and his team know them personally. He notices: “You would have a lot of old people who can’t leave the house calling you to pick up a prescription or some shopping. You would spend a bit of extra time chatting them because they enjoy having someone to chat to.” Beresy’s is grateful for the support from other local businesses which use them to deliver their products all across Ireland. Local companies such as Webtech NI, Elite Electronics, Cathcarts and Stuart Auctions have contracted him to deliver their products to customers, including those in Belfast or Dublin. Beresy’s services are also used by local pharmacies, laundries, take-aways and off-licences. “Demand from local business is essential in keeping us going,” he comments. “We always go out of our way to shop local because we know how important it is,” Gareth states.

Removals is a new arm to the business. “People were asking us to pick up a bed or garden furniture; bulky items that we couldn’t fit in the vans. So we got the bigger van and now we have parents using us to flit students from the university accommodation in Belfast,” he says.

The recession actually benefited Beresy’s because more and more people chose to have a take-way at the weekend, rather then going to a restaurant. “They still wanted a treat, but took the cheaper option of a take-away and a bottle of wine,” Gareth notes. He laughs when he hears customers say: “Did anyone order a Beresy’s?” The company has a strict ‘No ID, no delivery’ policy to ensure that no alcohol is sold to anyone underage and that prescriptions are sent to the right person. “We have to cover our own backs,” says Gareth.

Asked what is the most obscure item that he has been asked to deliver, Gareth laughs and says: “You can get some odd requests on a Saturday night.” It has taken a lot of commitment and sacrifices to make Beresy’s work, with many family events missed and lots of late nights. “People might think that’s it’s only a matter of driving a car or van, but it’s a lot of sacrifice and long hours.” Being a family-run business is helpful because “there seems to be more of an interest if I wasn’t here; there’s that wee bit more care”.

Looking to the future, Gareth says: “I would hope to get more lorries if it keeps going the way it has been going.”