An environment-friendly pest control business in Newton Poppleford has won an award for its ‘exceptional’ customer service.

Green Rock Pest Control won the Best Live Support System category of the UK Small Business Awards 2024 ‘in recognition that the company provides exceptional customer support and excels in problem solving and maintaining strong customer relationships’.  

Owner Kieron Bewes has a background in horticulture and believes in working with nature to prevent or eliminate pest problems, using poisons only as a last resort.

He strives to minimise his company’s environmental footprint and this involves working with and supporting local organisations that conserve plants and wildlife. His work takes him all around East Devon and into West Dorset.

Kieron said: “People tend to want to save the planet, but the high cost of sustainable options can mean they take the cheaper route of over-the-counter poisons that either don’t work or result in secondary poisoning of local pets and wildlife.

“It’s important to create a memorable customer experience and to advise and explain about what and why this is happening, provide a rapid response and take ownership of a problem until it is eradicated. Customers recognise the benefits of getting the problem resolved once and for all.”

Rather than killing pests, Kieron aims to make properties less appealing and less accessible to them.

For example, if a customer reports a problem with rats, he will survey the property to find out how they are getting in and where they are hiding. Drain valves, drain covers, mesh covers for air bricks and door strips can then be installed to keep them out.

If the problem involves birds nesting on rooftops Kieren can put up wires or netting  to make them seek another home.

He aims to act as an ambassador for the pest control industry, showing that ‘it’s not all about killing’.

After learning that he had received the award, Kieron said: “It’s really nice to see all my hard work over the past few years be recognised by the Business Awards UK.”

He has thanked other local pest controllers for their support while he was setting up his business, naming Russell Jones of Shaw Specialist Cleaning and Pest Control in Exmouth, Debbie Wilson of Wilson’s Pest Management and Training and Neil Barrett at IEP Pest Control in Luppitt in particular. 

He has also thanked other local businesses that have worked with him, especially Mallett Drainage, Sign Vision and Paul’s Garden Service.