Lord Prescott opens new Grange site in Hull

Published:  11 July, 2012

TELFORD: After completing the relocation of the northern factory to the Humber Business Park in Paull Hull, Grange Fencing celebrated the move to the new site with an official opening at which Lord John Prescott was the guest of honour.

The new premises, which cover 6.2 acres, include a large L-shaped factory, a storage warehouse and a large external storage yard. Lord John Prescott, who represented Hull East as the Labour Member of Parliament from 1970 to 2010, unveiled the new plaque and cut the ribbon to the factory before meeting staff and taking a tour of the new site. Later he spoke about the factory, saying, “I have been very impressed with how Grange has transformed the site. This business is continuing to grow and providing local employment which should be celebrated.”

Speaking about the new site, managing director, Duncan Hill, went on to say: “We are pleased to have been able to relocate on Humberside, keeping manufacturing in the area. It is important to Grange that we retain our existing workforce, skills set and a factory that is close to where our Baltic timber lands in the country and where our northern customers are based. We have spent eight years building up our operations here and we are very proud of our team in Hull, which keeps going from strength to strength.”

The Grange story is all about service. This sounds easy enough – just aim to deliver every order on time and in full – but two factors conspire to make this a challenge: the domestic fencing market is seasonal and it is also hugely influenced by the weather. While the first of these factors is predictable and can be planned for, the second cannot.

Therefore every winter, stocks equivalent to several hundred miles of fencing are built up at their two storage yards. In addition, large quantities of key raw materials are accumulated along the length of the supply chain: at suppliers’ yards at ports and at Grange. This investment in stock enabled Grange to supply all orders promptly and in full throughout the period following the storms of early January.

The normal delivery lead time for Grange is 3-4 working days and their target is to deliver 99% of all orders on time and in full. No-one can afford to wait for an overdue delivery. Time is money, especially for fencing contractors.

In addition to timber fencing, Grange’s products include a full range of timber garden products designed to help their stockists achieve add-on sales. Last year, the range was widened further to include domestic metal fencing and gates. These are available in a number of styles and non-standard lengths of fencing and special width gates are available to order. All metal products are doubly protected having been both zinc plated and powder coated. The aim was to make domestic steel fencing more affordable by mass-producing a limited number of styles and by always carrying stocks so that stockists and contractors never have to wait.

“I joined Grange Fencing in 1978, initially running the contracting side of the business. I took over as managing director of the whole company in 1985 and it has been growing more or less year on year,” Mr Hill explained.

Today Grange Fencing supplies almost 3000 miles of fencing a year from their factories in Shropshire and Paull, with an annual turnover of over £35 million.

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