A KEIGHLEY man is celebrating 40 years selling homes across the town.

Ian Bradbury joined Dacre, Son & Hartley from leaving the sixth form at Keighley's Holy Family School in 1983.

And over the decades, it's estimated he's been involved in around 10,000 transactions.

Two years after starting with the estate agency he moved into a sales role, and became manager of the North Street, Keighley, branch in 1991. He later became a shareholder and, in 2002, was made a director.

Ian is now the company's area director for the Aire Valley.

"I was fortunate to learn the trade from several very good and experienced people who always took the time to offer me help and advice," he says.

"The most important thing they taught me is that estate agency is a people business. Buying and selling a property is usually the biggest financial transaction people make, so buyers and sellers want to work with people they trust, and this is something I always instil on the next generation of estate agents."

Ian says the UK housing market has seen many peaks and troughs over the years.

"There are lots of ups and downs but the market is very resilient," he adds.

"Even though I started in 1983 it wasn’t until 1989 that I sold a house for £100,000 and that was a big moment. However, during most of the 1990s things went backwards and at some points we had hundreds of homes listed for sale, which made it a genuine buyers’ market.

"Then in the run up to the credit crunch, things changed dramatically. Between 2005 and 2008 we would regularly agree sales on several homes every day. Some of these market conditions were replicated during the pandemic, when stamp duty giveaways, staggeringly low interest rates and huge numbers of people relocating to different parts of the country all combined to create a perfect storm in the market.

"Even now, despite rising interest rates, the market remains buoyant in and around Keighley. That's partly due to it being a relatively unique location, where you can still buy houses for £50,000 close to the town centre but equally you can pay upwards of £1 million in surrounding villages."

Tribute is paid by Patrick McCutcheon, head of residential at Dacre, Son & Hartley.

"Ian is the consummate professional and a key reason we’re so successful in the Aire Valley," he says.