Julie Bishop, 37, set up her environmentally responsible cleaning company Living Clean in
Unthank Road in 2002 after her asthmatic son had an allergic reaction to household cleaning
Miss Bishop ,of Hillcrest Road, Thorpe St Andrew, suffers from asthma herself but it was when her son Paul Newman, now six, suffered an allergic reaction to paints which closed his oesophagus that she took action.
She said at the time her father had been diagnosed with cancer and he was convinced there was a link between chemicals and cancer and so she started to wonder if the asthma was being caused by chemicals too.
"I started looking for alternatives and importing products from America. That got me into thinking how do other people clean their homes," Miss Bishop said.
Then she came up with the idea of starting her own cleaning business using environmentally safe products. What started off as a one-man band has now become a thriving business with 20 cleaners and over 1,000 clients in Norfolk.
Living Clean cleans homes and offices around Norfolk using its own natural biodegradable cleaning products branded under the logo Dolly the Dolphin.
She has already opened a second office in Dereham and is now looking to franchise in 2006.
Miss Bishop said she always wrote her ideas down in a pink book or in an ideas file on her computer and then later on went through them and crossed them off.
"Sometimes I wake up in the morning with an idea or have a dream. It's weird how ideas just come about. The nice thing about is how six months down the line I can see lots of little ticks next to them," she said.