On 9th April 2015 we celebrated 50 years of the family business. Founded by Sabato Notaro in 1965, our parent company, S.Notaro Ltd has since made a profound impact on the local area.
Below is a timeline of how S.Notaro Ltd and Notaro Windows came to be:
Sabato Notaro arrives in England on a one-year work permit as a farm worker. Speaking no English, he left his home country of Italy along with his wife, Immacolata and three young children, all under the age of four to pursue a new life for the family. His first job was at Wood Farm in Fiddlington, where he lived in an old shepherd’s hut that had been converted from its previous use as a chicken house, living off bread, milk and eggs.
After starting new employment at Enmore, he was given a cottage to reside in. This meant that he could now send for his wife and family to come over.
With first son, Joe, born, Sabato thought of different ways that he could provide for the family. By building chicken coops and huts out of sticks and timber from the nearby forest, he started raising chickens to the point of lay. By the end of rationing Sabato had about 500 chickens. The farmer that employed him didn’t like his side interest and sacked him.
With the family in possession of only one oil lamp, the damp cottage they lived in was heated by moving the lamp from room to room. Having recently left farming Sabato started hedge cutting. Unfortunately this was seen as a breach in his work permit and he needed to find farm work within 48 hours or risk being deported. Luckily he started working on a farm in Spaxton, staying until his work visa expired and then going self-employed.
Sabato purchased a house on-loan in the nearby village of Nether Stowey to live in with his family along with his brother and his spouse. Located in the centre of the village it featured heating and an inside bathroom; a great luxury compared to the old chicken hut just four years earlier.
The family moved to a small holding in Huntsworth with no electricity, heating and outside toilet. He started buying timber and selling it on to farmers as well as farming chickens to the point of lay. Unfortunately at this time he found himself with mounting debts after a period of misfortune. Luckily he purchased two old cottages for £600 and applied for planning permission to replace them.
With the sale of a property he was in the middle of building and the income from these two new cottages, Sabato was able to clear some of his debt and purchase more land with the aim to build more residences as well as demolish the old farmhouse and build a four-bedroom bungalow for his wife and now ten children.
After a period of developing, Sabato founded S.Notaro Ltd, providing building services to the local community.
The success of S.Notaro Ltd led to the creation of a 2,000 sq. foot factory for the manufacture of aluminium windows. This factory was later available to sell directly to the public.
Sabato purchased 12 acres of field and farmland. With the aim of creating a lake for local wildlife to flourish, the area was dug up day and night for seven months. Today this lake forms part of Lakeview Holiday Cottages, a self-catering holiday cottage estate offering 25 two and three-bedroom fully furnished holiday cottages and lodges; another child of the S.Notaro Ltd family.
The old shepherd’s hut was brought home to Huntsworth in the hope that it would be cared for in generations to come.
S. Notaro Windows was founded as an addition to the S.Notaro Ltd business, providing quality craftsmanship and home improvements to the people of Somerset.
The new Notaro Windows factory was opened – 29,500 sq. feet bigger than first one all the way back in 1977.
Lakeview Holiday Cottages opened its doors to Somerset holidaymakers with the 12-acre private lake still in use today.
S.Notaro Ltd has continued to grow just as the late Sabato would have wished. At Huntworth a hotel development has started with an 18-hole golf course and driving range, alongside a 187-house site at Durleigh.
Here’s to the next 50
The S.Notaro Group of companies continues to be family-led and prides itself on quality in everything that it does. Managing Director Joe Notaro continues to lead with the support of his extended family and we all look forward to the next 50 years!