A SALE based painter and decorator is celebrating being named in the top 20 British Tradesmen.

Darren Whitfield, 37, has more than 21 years in the trade and is the owner of A Whitfield & Son, a painting and decorating firm set up by his father in 1975.

The business’s success - which helped to earn them a place in Trustmark’s top 100 tradesmen - has been highlighted by painting firm Dulux, which recognise it as one of its select decorators.

Trustmark, a government endorsed body which run the competition, set it up to highlight the best British tradesmen have to offer.

There were more than 600 entries coming from a range of trades including builders, plumbers, painters and decorators, electricians, landscape gardeners, glaziers and roofers.

Darren said: “It is fantastic. I don’t normally enter competitions but I thought why not, as I had nothing to lose.

“To win a place in the top 100 was good but getting in the top 20 was brilliant.”

To enter he had to take a before and after picture of a job he was going to do, explain how he went about doing the job whilst also getting the customer to send in a piece about how they found the work.

Darren hopes the success will help boost business, in what he describes as a difficult time for all trades.

He said: “A few years ago I would have had about 12 months of work lined up in advance but know it is only one or two.”

In his spare time Darren is also a Trafford magistrate helping show magistrates do come from all walks of life.

In tribute to his father Alan who died in 2002 of lung cancer aged 53, he said: “I dedicate my achievement to my late father. My dad taught me everything I needed to know about all aspects of my trade and gave me a job for life.”