One day in 1975, Bill Munro left work and headed to the travel agents to book a well-deserved break, only to find it was closed.

He may not have got his holiday booked, but he did get a life-changing idea. The former bank teller turned salesman soon opened a travel agents in Barrhead, employing four staff.

Believing there to be a lack of imagination in the sector, Mr Munro opened seven days a week and ensured staff could provide expert knowledge on emerging destinations and specialist trips.

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Daughter Sharon joined the business straight from school. Having delivered leaflets for the company since she was 14, in 2007 she headed a management buyout, which ensured the business remained in the family.

Under the stewardship of Ms Murno, Barrhead continued its impressive growth, even in the face of competition from online firms and budget airlines. Today Barrhead has 75 branches and employs more than 1,000 staff.

It has successfully expanded into England, and continued to invest in innovation to ensure its shops remain a more valued resource for holiday research than the expanse of the internet.

Multimedia desks and virtual reality headsets placing customers in their chosen destination couldn’t have been dreamed of by Mr Munro when that first branch opened.

Still a director of business, the self-confessed “Conservative with a capital C”, sparked outrage in 2014 when it emerged he had written to staff to tell them a Yes vote in the independence referendum meant “impending disaster”.

The storm passed and Barrhead kept growing. It still is growing, in spite of challenges from Brexit and terror attacks.

Its most recent accounts show sales grew to £279m though pre-tax profits fell by 10 per cent to £2.8m.

Of course, while the Munros stand to make a huge financial gain over the sale – Bill and Sharon between them owned the entirety of the company’s shares – it is a loss to Scotland’s thriving family business community.

Although the family will still run the business operations, the sale to US-based Travel Leaders Group comes as something of a surprise, as writing in The Herald last month Ms Munro said the family-owned business model was the best.

But ultimately, the family have worked hard over the past 35 years, growing a business that makes a huge economic contribution to Scotland, and they deserve their rewards.