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May 2017’s Which? Trusted trader of the month is Southdown Landscapes and Turf Company

By Rebecca Milligan

Congratulations are due to the family-owned landscaping and turf specialists. We caught up with Katie Forward, office manager, to find out more.
Southdown Landscapes and Turf with the Which? Trusted trader of the month logo

Southdown Landscapes and Turf Company started out 50 years ago as a turf company. The business has grown and changed with the times as landscaping fashions for patios, decking and crazy paving have come and gone. Now it focuses on supplying and installing artificial grass and turf, plus landscaping across the GU postcodes in Surrey, Berkshire and Hampshire.

Could you be the next Which? Trusted trader of the month? Find out more in our article about the process, or read on for more on our May winner.

A special anniversary

Not only has the Camberley-based company won May’s Which? Trusted trader of the month, but Southdown Landscapes and Turf Company is celebrating a significant anniversary on 20 May. The family-run business was established in May 1967 by Mike Forward, and will be celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, with a host of special offers and a visit from the Mayoress of Surrey Heath.

‘The Which? Trusted trader of the month award couldn’t have come at a better time,’ said Katie Forward, Southdown Landscapes and Turf Company’s office manager. ‘We’re looking forward to an exciting future and celebrating our 50th birthday this month, too.’

Sadly, Mike passed away last year, but the business is still very much a family affair. Mike’s widow, Jane, owns the company, while their children Katie, Ian and Justin take charge of the day-to-day running of the business. With six other members of staff, including Katie’s son on a part-time basis, they are a close team. ‘It’s great to work with your family because you get to see them every day,’ Katie said.

Excellent reviews

The business has a strong customer-service ethic. ‘It’s exciting dealing with customers and making sure they leave happy,’ Katie said. The team feels a real sense of achievement when reviews come in with top scores. ‘Customer satisfaction is what we’re here for,’ Katie said. ‘That’s everything to us.’

One of the reasons Southdown Landscapes and Turf won the award is its excellent engagement with Which? Trusted Traders on social media. Katie told us she really enjoys that side of the business. ‘We love getting involved in social media. It’s good fun to be able to be involved in that and get feedback – the reviews we get there are fantastic, too.’

Which? Trusted Traders

Southdown Landscapes and Turf Company was one of the first Which? Trusted traders to join the scheme, back in September 2013. Katie said the endorsement is particularly valuable for reassuring older customers that Southdown is a reliable and trustworthy business. Gaining the endorsement wasn’t easy, and Katie realised that ‘it really set us apart. The level of detailed information needed to gain the accreditation showed me that you wouldn’t let just anybody in.’

Being a Which? Trusted trader has been good news for the business. ‘We think it’s fantastic,’ Katie said. ‘We love being able to hand out the code of conduct at the quoting stage. It provides real reassurance to potential customers.’

Well done to Southdown Landscapes and Turf Company – Which? Trusted trader of the month May 2017. Here’s to the next 50 years.

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