Case study

Helping to Keep Hard Working Business Owner Afloat – The Windsor and Maidenhead Boat Company

Chef and business owner Gareth Pugh and his team provide a stunning riverboat venue for weddings; corporate events; special celebrations and restaurant-style experiences.


Their elegant Edwardian vessel navigates the River Thames between Windsor and Maidenhead, ensuring unforgettable, tailor-made experiences.

Running a business like this comes with constant challenges. Gareth explains, ‘I found myself grappling with burnout and over-commitment. Engaging with Berkshire Growth Hub, and particularly working alongside Sara, proved to be a crucial remedy. Together, we took a step back to analyse the situation.

Sara’s insightful guidance offered a new perspective, affirming that seeking assistance was not only acceptable but essential for sustainable success. With her support, we systematically addressed concerns surrounding the expansion of my team, ultimately empowering me to delegate tasks and share responsibilities. Sara’s expertise not only helped me overcome burnout but also cultivated a healthier and more strategic approach to managing my role and business.

This resulted in a 4.4% increase in revenue from employing a salesperson, while allowing me to focus more on the variable costs of the operation and a new sustainable pricing structure. Without the help and support from Berkshire Growth Hub and especially Sara, the company and myself would have severely struggled over the last 12 months to the point where I would not have been surprised if the business failed.’

Of the relationship, Business Adviser Sara Charlesworth said, ‘Gareth takes great pride in the place The Windsor and Maidenhead Boat Company takes in the community. A talented chef, he makes a point of sourcing local suppliers and offering touches like fresh bread baked on the boat. This caters well to current consumer tastes, and makes corporate and private events extra special.

With repeat bookings and recommendations increasing rapidly, Gareth had less time and energy to step back and consider options. Working with Gareth has been a pleasure. We discussed his goals and what is important to him, unpicked some of the difficulties and formed strategies together, giving clarity and enabling growth.

It’s important to us, to do all we can to support hard-working business owners like Gareth to keep afloat and to be in a strong position to take the many opportunities our area provides for growth.’

For more information on how the Berkshire Growth Hub team can help support your business, through masterclasses or one to one support, please contact them here.


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