MEET the Cheshire businesswoman who grew her ‘thriving’ firm from nothing and has just sold it in a multi-million-pound deal.

Sharon Rotherham started from humble beginnings, growing up as one of nine on a council estate in the heart of Liverpool.

The 53-year-old still describes having to ‘pinch myself’ when speaking of her success, having built her accountancy firm Swift Accountants from the ground up over two decades.

First established in 2004, as Sharon Rotherham Chartered Accountants, the practice started in a shop front premises on Liverpool Road in Widnes. 

Since then, the company has grown organically into a multi-million-pound business with thousands of nationwide clients.

And three successful branches based in Cheshire; its headquarters based in Widnes, another branch on Greenall’s Avenue in Stockton Heath and a branch on Chowley Court in Chester.

Sharon recently made the announcement that she would be retiring from the business, ready to take on new ventures and explore her own passions.

The business will now enter a new chapter, having been acquired by co-director Robert Jones in an impressive multi-million-pound sale.

Speaking on the closing of this chapter of her career, Sharon said: “I've had a fantastic career building my practice in my hometown of Widnes and across Cheshire.

“I've worked with thousands of clients and want to thank everyone who trusted me with their affairs. 

Chester and District Standard: Sharon began Swift Accountants 20 years ago in WidnesSharon began Swift Accountants 20 years ago in Widnes (Image: Supplied)
“I would also like to thank my staff who have supported me, and for their hard work and loyalty, and assisting me in building the business.”

Over 20 years, Sharon built the firm into one of the leading regional accountancy practices, and she is hopeful that the business will continue to grow even further in her absence.

Director, Robert Jones, commented on the sale, saying: "It's business as usual for Swift Accountants' colleagues and clients, but we will now expand into other areas like financial services, pensions, and mortgages.

“This will allow us to offer a wide range of services and drive transformational financial change for our clients."

Meanwhile, the driven mum-of-one, who confesses to living in the ‘best house in Widnes’, has new projects on her horizons.

“I am not finished. There is still an itch I need to scratch.

“I am so lucky and I pinch myself everyday. I was brought up on a council estate. There was nine of us on an end terrace. I am so lucky,” she said.

Sharon plans to take on a political route, having recently joined the Reform party and expressed hopes for running in an election in the future.

She told how growing up her mum was always a ‘political woman’ who ‘fought against the system’, and she hopes to do the same, in particular addressing issues involving tax.

Alongside this, she also started a Widnes-based charity last year, Widnes Hope Foundation, which helps to feed hungry families in the local area who cannot afford to buy food.

Sharon is hoping to grow the charity into a hub, similar to the Foodbank, with a chosen premises in the pipeline.

“We get essentials for people who need it. To watch a generation go worse off than better is heart-breaking.

“We want it to have a café and to be a central hub for people who need us.

“The main principle of the charity is to be volunteer-only. All that money has to go back to the people who need it, so we only look for volunteers and I have put my own money into starting this.”