A Northampton dad will try to wipe out a long-standing Guinness World Record for the world's fastest window cleaner.
Ashley Mackintosh, director of family business AE Mackintosh Cleaning Services, will compete in the window-cleaning competition at London’s Cleaning Show in two weeks.
He will try to beat the 20-year record maintained by Terry 'Turbo' Burrows, who cleaned three 1.143m high windows in 9.14 seconds in 2009. This was a tenth of a second faster than his previous best time set four years earlier.
Mr Mackintosh, 32, from Hunsbury, has been a window cleaner for 20 years.
He said: "I first saw Terry break the record on BBC's Record Breakers and I loved seeing him work. I never knew then that I would be a window cleaner but it will be great just to meet him.
"I'm more of a thorough window cleaner than a fast one, but I'm still pretty fast. I don't know my average time but I will need to put all my twenty years of experience into the challenge if I'm going to beat his record.
"It is a great opportunity pick up some tips on speed and technique and would be incredible to think that the world record could be brought to my hometown of Northampton.”
There is a £250 cash prize for the winner of the daily competition at the Cleaning Show at ExCeL London, at the Royal Victoria Dock, East London, from March 14 -16, and a chance to enter the history books as the world's fastest window cleaner.
Terry 'Turbo' Burrows, from Essex, said: “As a former martial arts instructor and boxer I managed to perfect a rapid 16-move sequence which is very hard to copy if you don’t have the core strength, flexibility, fast hands and reflexes.
“However, unlike the early days when I first started competing, now you can study my technique via clips on YouTube, and each year a new generation of cleaners come along to try and beat me.
“Maybe this year I’ll finally meet my match, and I’ll have to hand over my title. But even if that happens I’ll never forget how great it was to hold the record for so many years.”
Contestants must clean three windows and a window sill using a regulations-standard squeegee. Time is added for any smears left over.
Paul Thrupp, Executive Council Member of the Federation of Window Cleaners and an official Cleaning Show world record judge, said: “Terry has done amazingly well to hang on to his record for this long but there’s always a chance of an upset. Lots of our members have already told us they are planning to take a crack at his record, and some are in training right now.
“Having said that, when you see Terry on video or cleaning live he moves so quickly it’s hard to imagine someone will ever manage a sub-nine second time even if they try and copy his technique. So we’ll have to wait and see if anyone can match him when the competition comes to London next week.”
Anyone else from Northampton interested in taking Terry on, or wanting to watch Ashley make the world record attempt at The Cleaning Show, can register for free at www.cleaningshow.co.uk.
Read more about Mr Mackintosh's story on his window washing blog at https://aemackintosh.wordpress.com/.