AN entrepreneur who has struggled with mental health problems has not let them stop him pursuing his dreams.

Kiel Locke, 23, started out with just an £8 bag of wax and Waxxy was born in his one-bedroom council flat in Thornaby, near Stockton.

Making products in their small kitchen, Mr Locke and his partner Stuart worked around the clock making candles.

Since he was a child, he’d always longed to set up his own business, and he was determined not to let his mental health problems take over.

The Northern Echo:

“Since I was a kid, I always dreamed big," he said.

"Even today, I have an amazing imagination. Most children wanted to be a police man or a doctor. Me, I wanted to own my own business.

“Waxxy helped me to stay focused and helped me to get back into the working environment, which has helped me with my EUPD disorder.

“Today I am more confident in myself and feel more positive about my future and my career growing our Waxxy kiosk chain.

“With the help from Space to Trade we had the support we needed to boost our business and move to a kiosk in the Castlegate Shopping Centre. Lynn has been great to have on the side lines from the get-go.

“I also can’t thank my partner Stuart enough for the support he’s given me.”

Space to Trade offers shopping centre promotion and retail selling opportunities to retailers and other businesses who want to sell their products or services.

The Northern Echo:

Lynn Carmichael, a sales manager for Space to Trade said, “This is what gives me job satisfaction – I am so proud of these guys.

“They are one of my clients who I’ve worked with to get them set up and finding their feet, they took the plunge and made a hobby into a business.

“Their products are amazing but their drive, passion, creativity and commitment to consistently progress & improve is inspiring.

“Their focus and tenacity is amazing, and I am sure they will have a great future ahead."

When asked what advice Kiel would give to other youngsters who are looking to set up their own business, he said: “The advice I would give to anyone setting up a business is to write a solid business plan. To ensure you know what direction and the long-term goals for your business.

“Remember no matter what comes along, you can do anything if you work hard and have the determination to exceed."