MADONNA requested plain, unscented red and Ed Sheeran can’t get enough of spicy Amber Noir.

The candle firm which is Glasgow’s best kept secret will be blowing out 120 of its own creations this year as it celebrates a milestone birthday.

As well as helping create a relaxed ambience in the homes of the rich and famous, Shearer Candles helped light up the homes of families across the city during the miner’s strike blackouts.

From modest beginnings in the Candleriggs area, Shearers now makes around 3.2million scented candles a year for hotels, restaurants and homes and the odd celebrity. The most famous they will disclose is Madonna.

The Govan-based company was asked to supply the candles for the pop legend’s Highland wedding when she married Guy Ritchie at Skibo Castle in Dornoch in 2000.

Rosey Barnet, creative director, said: “One of my caterers phoned me up and said they wanted some red candles.

“It had to be a particular colour and he wouldn’t tell me who they were for.

“When the security van came to pick them up and I said, ‘you are going to have to tell me who they are for.’

“It was for Madonna’s wedding. It was just plain red, they weren’t scented.

“George Michael used to buy a lot of Persian Lime.

“When we had the old factory one of the hotels phoned up and asked, did we sell sell candles to the public.

“At that time, we were in the old factor, with a tiny reception area. The huge black limo pulled up and four big leather-clad bodyguards got out and then out popped Janet Jackson.

“She bought sandlewood candles for her tour.”

Shearer's began life in the Candleriggs area of Glasgow’s Merchant City area. The earliest records the family can trace the company back to date from 1897.

Rosey said: “I was told that the reason it is called Candleriggs is because riggs means hills, it was all farmland in those days.

“There was a storm predicted and all the farmers wanted to bring their stocks in so all the candle makers lit candles so they could bring them in.

“Candleriggs as a street was built in the 17th century.

“We can date the company back to around 1897 but pre-that we haven’t come up with much.”

Rosey, a softly-spoken Goldie Hawn lookalike, became part of the family business by default when she met her husband, Ian, the MD of the firm, and her creative input helped transform the brand into a household name.

She said: “Grandpa owned a hotel in Park Circus and had a restaurant, La Bonne Auberge.

“He always had difficulty getting candles, so he tracked the Shearer brothers down in Ibrox.

“They were making mainly household candles, for lighting and a few catering candles. So he had to pay for his wax and his wick and they would make them for him.

“Grandpa was a bit of an entrepreneur so he bought into the business.

“I had lived in Germany and they burnt candles all the time but not scented. My husband was amazed when he came to my flat and I had candles burning.

“We got married and I had my two daughters and I decided I would wrap some candles for Christmas, so we did black and gold with some ribbon around it.

“And my husband said, ‘why are you doing that?’ and I told him, I was going to have all my girlfriends round from nursery and have a coffee morning and raise some money.

“And it went well, and he said, maybe you should come into the business.

“And then the market started to change.

“We got a machine that made little room scenters and it was strawberry and lemon. I said to him, we need to make this more fashionable and it just grew from there.”

The company experienced a boom in 1972 during the miners strike, when people across the UK had to get used to frequent black-outs.

Rosey, who lives in the West End, said: “We sold so many candles, there were queues round the block.

“They made enough money to re-invest in machinery. It was still mainly church candles and household candles although some restaurants were burning them.”

Britons spend a whopping £90m on scented candles every year. Like singer-songwriter Ed Sheeren, the top selling candle amongst Glasgow shoppers is Amber Noir, described as a “sensual mix of k essence of tuberose, violets and amber.”

Another popular choice is the scent based on the Thierry Mugler perfume Angel and Rosey is excited about this year’s Christmas range which includes a very-realistic gingerbread scent.

The couple’s two daughters are now involved in the business. Stephanie runs the marketing department and Victoria runs the shops.

The first Shearer's store opened in 2004, at the existing Govan base in Robert Street and the company now runs four in Glasgow, including a new pop-up on Argyle Street.

There are also plans to open another pop-up in Braehead and the first shop in Scotland’s capital city.

Shearer's has also supplied candles for some of the biggest names on the high street including Marks & Spencer, the White Company, Tesco, Kelly Hoppen and Sainsbury’s and a new deal is in the pipeline with a children’s store.

Rosey said: “Scent is now the most important thing for candles. We are always looking at the latest trends.

“It is 85% ladies who come in but you get the guys in at Christmas time.”

Shearers will be inviting the public into the Govan factory as part of Doors Open Day from September 11 to 15.

In 2015, Shearer's made around 3.25 million candles

Around 3600 candles per hour are produced.

Shearers has 54 different types of wick in stock. Of these, there are 25-30 types that use.

The oldest moulding machine was made in 1974, although it is not in use anymore.

Therannual consumption of wax is 122 tonnes

Shearers currently sells 34 scents