Having spent 9 months and well over £1.2 million on the building purchase and refurbishment, this exciting expansion comes as a result of the company’s growth over the past few years.
Radleys has seen its glassblowing team grow by over 30% over the last 3 years, alongside overall business turnover growing by a similar percentage. Much of this growth has come from international sales, where the demand for Radleys glassware has been particularly strong.
Radleys’ new state of the art facility is based in its existing location, and has three departments; production, purchasing and stores/shipping in one building. Having all the departments in one location will improve operational efficiency and communication. With innovation at the forefront of the successful company, the new building and additional space also allows Radleys to install new semi-automated equipment as it starts to invest in new automation and technologies.
Mark Radley, Managing Director, said: “We’re all really proud of the new facility, and have invested in the future of the business. Eight expert glassblowers, with over 200 years of combined experience manufacturing all types of standard and specialised custom glassware will now have state-of-the-art facilities and the best quality equipment to do the best job they can. In an environment where the pool of skilled glassblowers is shrinking, we will continue to invest in training, infrastructure and equipment to protect our future.
“We’re also really excited for what the next few years will bring, and look forward to expanding our apprentice training program, which current has three apprentices. The new space allows for growth, and combines a superb mixture of a learning culture which develops a sound foundation of various glassblowing skills, along with manufacturing a range of Radleys own products.”
The recent launch of the new glassblowing facility was attended by a number of suppliers, friends and local businesses totalling 150.
Mark Radley continued “The general staff facilities are very impressive, some of the feedback from our business associates who visit other facilities in Europe, give us the confidence to say that our new manufacturing facility may be one of the most modern in Europe.
“The building purchase and refurbishment was a proud moment, and the team enjoyed the opportunity to showcase our skills in our new state-of-the-art premises. We often forget quite how unique what we do is, so it was nice to see our guests wide-eyed in amazement. Mobile phones and cameras were clicking like mad photographing the lathes and flames as our glassblowers manipulated glass at over 1000 °C.”