The idea of Crosby Intruder Alarms came when one of the founding partners, the late Roy Williams was working as a television engineer in the early nineteen eighties and was told that the owner of the company that he worked for was going to retire because he could not negotiate the sale of his company and he was going to close it with the loss of all jobs.
During this time the television industry was going through massive changes and Televisions has become much more reliable and all of the rental companies had begun to feel the squeeze.
One of Roy’s colleagues had gone to work for a friend of his as General Manager of a Security Alarm Control Panel Manufacturer and it was him that suggested to Roy that he forms a Security Alarm Company.
After carrying out a lot of research into the idea, it was clear to Roy that there were two defined sales areas, the budget low end systems and the professionally fitted systems which where compliant with BS4737 which was the British Standard applicable to Security Systems at the current time.
As Roy was a firm believer in quality, he decided that he only wanted to fit quality systems which were compliant with BS4737.
Crosby Intruder Alarms was formed on the 2nd January 1984. Under the ownership of Roy Williams, his father Leslie Williams and a third Business Partner.
However, both Roy and his business partner at the time, were offered jobs within the television industry, it was decided that they would build up the business during their spare time.
Between 1984 and; 1986, both Roy and his business partner worked evenings and weekend and built up a good customer base of good quality installations that could be relied on. Quite a few of our customers still deal with us today and have had repeated installations from us and have recommended us to friends and family.
Because both Roy and his business partner where both still in full time employment, all profits made where re-invested back into the company. This gave them the capital to invest in items of equipment to improve the level of service that they could offer. A substantial amount of money was devoted to the purchase of a private mobile radio system. This allowed communication from the base station and between the vehicles. This has now been enhanced with Mobile Phones.
During this time Roy and his business partner used their time to develop their sales and installation skills and always took great pride over their work. The ability to hide cables, refit carpets etc are skills that can only be developed with practice.
With Roy’s background being in the television industry, it was decided to diversify into other areas. Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) was the obvious market for them to look at. It was a difficult market to enter due to the multi-national companies undertaking the larger
installations. After much persistence, Roy was able to build up a small customer base of CCTV clients, usually with small shops etc.
Roy and Ann’s son, Gareth was born at this point Roy still had a full time job and headed up the Special Security Products Division for a National Security Distribution Company, this involved working away a lot so Crosby Intruder Alarms work was still carried out at evenings and weekends.
Roy and Ann’s daughter Lyndsay was born in December. Shortly before this Roy was made redundant from the Security Distribution Company.
Crosby Intruder Alarms decided it was time that they needed an office. An Office was rented in Handfield Road, Waterloo.
When carrying out installations, Roy, posted cards at neighbouring properties apologising to neighbours for the disturbance, by doing this it
led to further business.
The company continued to grow and had a number of liveried and non-liveried vehicles on the road as well as a small team of Engineers.
We diversified into other markets as well such as Door Entry Systems, Lighting Systems, Car Alarms, Access Control Systems.
Roy designed a bespoke Wireless Alarm System “Vanguard” which was designed for Holiday Parks.
The first system was installed at Loch Lomond Holiday Park in Scotland and then further installations followed at Ardlui Holiday Park and Glen Dochart Holiday Park, Scotland.
The company employed 2 additional engineers, Neil and Lee. Lee is still with us today after taking a 13 year break between 2001 and 2014 when he returned to the company. Both Neil and Lee were fundamental in the growth of Crosby Intruder Alarms.
Crosby Intruder Alarms completed a large project for Simonswood Parish Council. Crosby Intruder Alarms carried out the installation project that covered 98% of the Parish’s residents. It was believed that Simonswood Parish Council where the first Parish Council to sponsor a community CCTV Project.
The late Peter Grossmith became an Employee of Crosby Intruder Alarms after what was meant to be a 2 week placement. Peter worked his way up to the position of Operations Manager before he sadly passed away in 2017 after a battle with Cancer.
During the year of 2000, Roy and Ann decided to buy out their business Partner. Also Roy’s Dad, Leslie one of the founding partners sadly passed away.
Crosby Intruder Alarms purchased 3 liveried vans (Renault Trafic’s). These replaced the cars and an additional one for a new member of staff.
We successfully obtained the contract with several chains of Bookmakers. These later sold out to national chains who still used us such as Stanley Racing, Tote Sport and William Hill.
This saw Roy and Ann start off Crosby Electrical Services (North West) Limited, which involved purchasing the assets of a bankrupt Electrical Contractors within Crosby. Roy and Ann held 50% of the share between them and where fundamental in obtaining contracts with Ethel Austin, Global Video and Tesco Express. Roy and Ann also assisted with the growth of this company to over 15 staff.
This year also saw Crosby Intruder Alarms move into their current office of 20 Endbutt Lane, Crosby, Liverpool, L23 0TR. This was formerly the offices and shop of John Goodwin Electrical.
During this year we where successful in obtaining contracts with several local authorities and housing associations. This was to carry out repairs to Door Entry Systems and Access Control Systems at various
properties across the North West.
We took over the Maintenance Contracts from a company based in Scotland within the North West and North Wales Region. The majority of these jobs where systems that had been installed originally by Scottish Power/Manweb. Quite a few of these customers still hold contracts with us today.
The company continued to grow and obtain contracts with both Electrical work and Fire and Security work. We took on an Office Junior to assist Ann in the office. One of our contracts we obtained was for a company called Gamestop. Gamestop had planned to open a number of shops across the UK, however, due to legal reasons following an acquisition they only opened 2. These sadly closed some years later due to the way the gaming industry changed.
We also obtained a contract with a company called I Sold It who sold items on Ebay on behalf of customers. We completed a large number of these stores before they sadly closed down.
Roy and Ann’s business partner in Crosby Electrical Services (North West) Limited said he wanted to run the business alone. Roy accepted an offer and sold his shares in the company. Unfortunately, the business went bankrupt and ceased trading a short time afterwards.
However, Crosby Intruder Alarms remained as strong as ever and then occupied the full building at 20 Endbutt Lane.
Roy and Ann’s son, Gareth officially joined the company as an Apprentice in September. This was initially offered to Gareth as a temporary position, however, 16 years on and he is still very much part of the business.
We obtained the contract with a company called Perfect Home and completed around 15 installations for them. We held this contract until 2010 and only lost it because we didn’t offer Fire Extinguishers.
As well as Gareth being an Apprentice, Roy and Ann put him in charge of the companies IT Systems and Business Development. Part of his Business Development role saw Gareth seek new opportunities and contracts. Gareth formed a partnership with a Home Automation Company who then introduced Crosby Intruder Alarms to a Property Development company based down South.
This year saw us complete an installation for the Property Development company in Virginia Water, Surrey. The house sold for £11.5m and was viewed by some celebrities. We also completed the design and 1 st fix of another large project in Wentworth, Surrey as well as installations in Bath.
This saw us take over a company, Kultronic Security Systems following the sudden passing of the company owner. We inherited a small amount of maintenance contracts.
The company continued to grow under the leadership of Roy and Ann. Installations continued throughout the UK and we continued to grow as a company.
Lee Swarbrick one of our original engineers from 1997 returned to the company and is still with us today.
We upgraded our phone system in our office. We removed our out-dated ISDN Telephone lines and went over to a “Hosted IP Phone System”. Not only did this save us a large amount of money, it meant that we could work from any location and make and receive calls as if we were in our office. This was something that allowed Roy and Ann to spend more time away from the business but still remain contactable if required.
The business had grown to a size where Ann felt she needed some help in the office. After several previous assistants over the years, the hunt began. After several applications, we appointed Stephen Russell as an Office Assistant.
Stephen completed his apprenticeship with ourselves in Office Administration before being promoted to Office Manager. Stephen still currently works at the company as is a very valuable member of staff.
2017 was a sad year for Crosby Intruder Alarms as our long standing Operations Manager, Peter Grossmith sadly lost his battle with Cancer and passed away on 4th January at Woodlands Hospice. Peter had been instrumental over the years with the success and growth of Crosby Intruder Alarms and he left a massive gap in our company. Following, Peter’s sad death, Gareth was offered the position of Operations Manager which he gladly accepted.
2017 also saw the requirement for an additional engineer which involved purchasing another van. This now meant that we had 4 vans on the road.
During this year we decided to invest over £11,000 in a software package to move away from paper-based job reports. After much research, we decided on WinSIMS which is a software package bespoke to our industry. This also allowed our engineers to use an App called Reach! which allows them to complete jobs on their Smart Phone and send them back to the office electronically. This means we can be more efficient and it also allows the engineers to see job history from previous visits all off their phone.
We decided to purchase another vehicle which was given to our Office Manager, Stephen. This van was to be used as a Pool Vehicle for when the main vans where off the road for servicing. The van then took our total to 5 vans. The vans where all liveried up and they are where the majority of our business comes from.
During this year, we decided to replace 2 of our vans for Pickup Trucks. These had bespoke drawer systems fitted for security of stock and a canopy accessible from the back and sides. We also saw the business expand into other areas such as WiFi Systems and Small Home Automation jobs using Amazon Alexa.
Gareth’s daughter, Roy and Ann’s first grandchild, Grace was born on 28th March at 06:00. This was Gareth and Lauren’s first child and the possible start of the next generation of Crosby Intruder Alarms.
However, as for many, this was an incredibly hard and difficult year for Crosby Intruder Alarms. Roy, became unwell on the same day Grace was born and we were placed into Lock Down shortly before this. Roy was worried that the business would have to close for good, but Gareth and Ann were determined to put a plan together to keep us going as strong as we could.
However, Roy’s health deteriorated rapidly and shortly after he was admitted to hospital and placed into an Induced Coma. He sadly passed away on 17 th April. Both Ann, Lyndsay and Gareth had their whole world turned upside down. A loving boss, husband, father and grand father had been taken away from us all, not only this Gareth had a new born baby at home and a business still to run. We had to make some changes and sadly furlough some of our staff as work dried up and we put plans in place to operate safely throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Both Gareth and Ann were adamant they wanted to safeguard all of their staff’s jobs, something we were proud to have both achieved.
During the Pandemic, we placed installations on hold, quotations were done remotely and we only attended emergencies. Our office closed and we operated from home.
Ann asked Gareth, if he would take on the role as a Partner in the business and as of the 1st August, he became a Partner of Crosby Intruder Alarms.
Once restrictions lifted, we began to operate at full capacity again, with some Health and Safety Changes to protect our staff and customers. We issued staff with Masks, Gloves, Sanitiser and stopped customers signing our phones to prevent spread of infection. The office reopened but we restricted numbers and visitors.
During 2021, we were asked if we were interested in quoting for the Intruder Alarm Systems for some Paint Shops who were opening a number of stores within 100 miles of our Office. We gladly accepted the offer and successfully obtained the contract for the Installations, Maintenance and Monitoring.
2021 also saw the birth of Gareth and Lauren’s second child George on 27th September.
We completed a large number of installations for the Paint Company, installing over 12 systems this year. All of these installations use Orisec’s equipment a manufacturer that we work very close with.
The Paint Shop Chain expanded nationally and asked us if we wanted to go on the journey with them which we decided to do. We now have completed 20 installations for them across the UK which is our largest contract to date.
We recruited another Engineer to join our team and support us with the growth of our business.
We celebrate 40 years in business on 2nd January. We would like to thank all of our staff, customers and suppliers, both past and present for all of their support. We wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for them.