You know the name, now get to know the person! Vernon Bradshaw, managing director of Val Ltd, talks about his love of surprises, the River Nile, and working with his dad as a teenager…

How and when did you start your career in the industry?

I was 13-14 years old, when I worked with my dad. I either stood at the bottom of the ladder or, while he went for a pint, I put the second coat of paint on his brilliant work.

What’s the best thing that’s ever happened to you at work?

Having my sons working with me!

Which three words would your friends use to describe your personality?

Bright, witty and generous — depending on who, and when, and what they’re after.

What’s your favourite word or phrase?

‘Wow’, because I love to be surprised!

Egypt’s River Nile was mind-blowing, says Vernon

Egypt’s River Nile was mind-blowing, says Vernon

Vernon would be lost without his iPad

Vernon would be lost without his iPad

Salt and vinegar or cheese and onion?

Salt and vinegar.

Which tune can’t you get out of your head at the moment?

One blessing of the ageing process is the delicate short-term memory, which makes me almost immune to such things.

What’s your hidden talent?

I don’t have one. I need all I have to get through the day.

What’s your greatest ambition?

To get to the Pearly Gates with a bob or two in my pocket.

What’s your guilty pleasure?

Making people happy!

Vernon’s Dad painted this sign...

Vernon’s Dad painted this sign…

...which years later, Vernon printed onto T-shirts!

…which years later, Vernon printed onto T-shirts!

Is there another job you’ve always wanted to do?

I can’t think of anything that could make me happier than whatIdo now.

Where is the best place you’ve ever visited?

The River Nile in Egypt, mind-blowing!

Which gadget or app couldn’t you live without?

Without a doubt, my iPad — half my head is in that thing.

If you could ask one person (living or dead) one question, what would you ask?

Hi Dad! What do you think about this? You painted this sign, and I learnt how to stick it onto T-shirts!