I use either a traditional rods and brushes system, or a rotary power sweeping system, depending on the condition of the chimney/flue. The days of sooty rooms requiring hours of cleaning afterwards are long gone. I use hearth sheets to protect carpets and floors, seal the chimney opening before commencing with cleaning, and have a purpose built industrial vacuum cleaner. I endeavour to leave your home as I found it, except for the chimney, which of course will have been swept to the highest standards.
In some extreme cases, such as bird nest removal, some mess may be inevitable due to the nature of the blockage. However I will always discuss these possibilities with you before commencing work, and every effort will be made to keep any mess to a minimum.
To prepare for my visit it helps if the mantlepiece and hearth are clear of any objects such as ornaments and pictures.