Senior Barber Dan discusses his heroic Grandfather, Cyril
"My grandfather, Cyril Mapp would be #MyGreatestHero.
During childhood, I endured rubbish barbers ruining my double crown every haircut, to the point where my nickname became 'Tufty'. My grandad got so fed up with the bad services, he gifted me his Wahl clippers from the 70s and taught me how to shave my head. Further down the line we used to give each other wet head shaves in solidarity of his cancer treatment."
Cyril pictured receiving his MBE from British High Commissioner to Nigeria in 1966.
Was your grandfather a barber at any point or just a keen clipper collector?
Just a clipper collector. He was in the RAF and worked at Bletchley Park during the war, after which he joined the Civil Service and worked in Nigeria and Botswana during the handover of power.
Would you say he was your initial inspiration to pursue barbering as a career?
In a roundabout way, yes! He was certainly the first person to teach me how to use a pair of clippers. Having gifted me his antique Wahl clippers, not only did I use them on myself but went on to offer buzzcuts and undercuts at university for £2 a pop.
Is there anything specific that you’ve picked up from him and carried through your own career?
He taught me many things as a young man, but taking pride in your work, attention to detail and a generosity of spirit are all qualities that I bring with me to work every day.
Is there any advice that you would now consider giving to him?
He was very well groomed so I'm not sure how much I could teach him, although I'm sure he'd love to come to see me on Monmouth Street for a Luxury Wet Shave, hot towels and cut throat razor treatment!
Would you like to raise a barbering child yourself?
Absolutely! Although I came to barbering a bit later on in life, with the unprecedented development in the men's grooming industry, I think it's an ideal trade for anyone looking for a job that combines artistic sensibilities and customer service. Our children certainly won't be short of a Saturday job as I'd definitely get them helping out in the shop to earn some pocket money.
Now that you know how to cut hair yourself. Do you have any top tips for dealing with a double crown?
Don't just lop it off!… To perfect the perfect crown, blow dry it slowly and then cut following the natural shape of the crown. Start from the middle and work outwards, like a clock face from midday to midnight.
What other wisdom did you Grandfather impart on you?
He was certainly one of the key role models in my life, both on a personal and a professional level. I'd say his greatest piece of advice was to never to be mean spirited or 'penny pinch' - you can tell a lot about a person by their level of generosity, whether that's with money, time or effort.
What would you gift your Grandfather from Murdock for Father's Day?
Definitely the brand new 'How To Shave' Kit. He was a sharp, clean shaven chap so our Cream and Post Shave Balm would go down a treat (with the classic Ernest double edged Razor to match). He was also a man of frequent travel, so our Cologne Collection would be the perfect accompaniment to his grooming kit on-the-go.