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Thompsons open third factory in Blackburn

Croydon-based tipper manufacturer invests more than £1.5 million in new facility to increase production and efficiency

TIPPERS are now being built at Thompsons’ third factory in Blackburn, which brings the total number of the company’s production facilities to seven, further increasing its leading position as the UK’s largest manufacturer of tipper and specialist truck bodies.

The new factory – known as Blackburn 3 – is another major investment for Thompsons who have invested £1.2 million on acquiring the site and another £500,000 on fitting the facility out with a new press, guillotine and overhead crane. Blackburn 3 will also include an on-site shot-blast facility and twin-bay paintshop.

 

The new factory is in close proximity to the company’s two existing sites in Blackburn. The first factory, which opened in 2000, focuses on fitting out truck chassis with tipping gears, cranes and other hydraulic components. Opened in 2005, the second site accommodates all the bodybuilding, while the latest facility will provide final fit, shot blasting and paint facilities, streamlining Thompsons’ overall production processes.   
 
‘With market demand continuing so strong we have been very confident in making this next major step in the company’s development,’ said Simon Shields, director of Thompsons’ northern operations. ‘Having a third factory in Blackburn allows us not just to increase production in unit terms, but also significantly increase our efficiency. For the first time, we can achieve the whole production process from cutting steel plate to delivering a finished, painted vehicle with everything done in-house.’

Blackburn 3 has already created 16 news jobs in the area and Thompsons are looking to employ another 20 staff principally for the new shot blasting and paint activities.
Increased manpower is also required for the final fit operation, which has seen Hyva skiploader and hookloader bodywork installed at the new factory.

Scott Burton, director of Thompsons, commented: ‘Blackburn 3 genuinely takes us into a new era as Thompsons not only extends its market leadership in terms of volume, but also in our production processes and overall efficiency. Since our first factory in Blackburn opened 15 years ago, the group’s turnover has increased five-fold and this means we can carry on investing in the future.’

 

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