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News from Bespoke Concrete

INDEPENDENT QUALITY VISIT A SUCCESS

Bespoke Concrete were delighted to welcome a site visit and independent review of works currently being carried out on behalf of a client they are working with on a prestigious London project. They were even happier to receive the glowing 8 page report in which the Inspector commented…

……. The presentation of the site was very good given that this is a fully productive working facility.  Bespoke Concrete demonstrated a good, clean and tidy working environment with each section undergoing their own in-house quality control methods…

……The supervisor was also impressed by the quality of the workforce, their willingness to engage and discuss their works, demonstrating pride in their achievements……….

…….One of the key aspects of the Quality review was the cleanliness of the workstations and the construction operatives being very conscientious in what they do and what they achieve……..

……..(image) shows a well organised section of the factory demonstrating good organisation of products and material….

Michelle Walton, Operations Manager, said “Obviously, we always strive to keep our entire workplace tidy and organised and all of the team at Bespoke are very proud of what they do and rightly so.  However, it’s always nice to receive complimentary feedback and we thank the Inspector for his kind words”..

Tony Kay collects Green Business Award 2013

BESPOKE CONCRETE PRODUCTS LTD– WINNERS OF THE GREEN BUSINESS AWARD 2013 AT THE NORTHUMBERLAND BUSINESS AWARDS CEREMONY.

Bespoke Concrete’s Commercial Director, Tony Kay accepted the award at a special celebration dinner at Linden Hall near Longhorsley on Thursday, November 14th.

Award categories include best business start-up, training award, employer of the year, green business of the year, export award, social enterprise, apprenticeship ambassador, and mid to large, and micro/small business of the year.  Bespoke Concrete would like to congratulate the winners from each of the categories.

The annual event, is organised by North East Press and Tweeddale Press to recognise and celebrate the achievements of businesses from across the county.

Amongst the sponsors for the event was NBSL – Northumberland’s enterprise agency –proud to be sponsoring the awards for the sixth year.  NBSL chief executive Phil Langton said: “Last year produced finalists that demonstrated Northumberland’s entrepreneurs continue to be creative and innovative in their approach to product and service design, both in local and regional markets as well as internationally”.

The Awards were also sponsored by Arch, The Northumberland Development Company.  Coun Dave Ledger, Arch Group chairman and deputy leader of Northumberland County Council, said: “Arch are delighted to be sponsoring the awards ceremony and be able to help recognise the many achievements of the outstanding companies that we have in Northumberland and whose valuable work contributes to the Northumberland economy.”

ENLIGHTENING CONCRETE IDEAS

If you feel lost in a concrete jungle, imagine soft glows from walkways leading you home at night as you find your way. Nitecrete™ glow in the dark concrete is one of many new innovations, which concrete specialists Bespoke Concrete Products have developed recently.

Its Research and Development Manager, Stuart Hedley explains that they have been experimenting with new materials to be mixed into concrete other than the traditional gravel, which adds to the speckled patterns on concretes.

"Nitecrete™ uses a photo luminescent aggregate and we've patented a technology to locate specific area where you might want to place the designs on your concrete," says Hedley. They are also manufacturers of street furniture such as park benches and material for buildings.

As featured in IGEM 2013 Show Daily News 12th October.

 

BESPOKE CONCRETE PRODUCTS PROUDLY INTRODUCES...

 

 

 

 

 

After 2½ years in their Research and Development department, Bespoke Concrete Products brings to the world their latest development – NITECRETE™

From their production facility at Tynedale Works in Prudhoe, Northumberland, Bespoke Concrete Products has created a first in glow in the dark concrete that could revolutionise the developing world. The company have invented a concrete called Nitecrete™ and will launch the product and bring it to market at the 4th International Greentech & Eco Products Exhibition IGEM 2013 and the 4th Global Entrepreneurship Summit held in Malaysia, October 10-13, 2013.

Nitecrete™ brings an exciting new dimension in concrete production and development.  Nitecrete™ incorporates amazing technology to keep concrete surfaces luminous for many hours.

Nitecrete™ offers a renewable light source that has no carbon emissions which will not only save money but the environment too. Nitecrete™ has no need for electrical power, is non-radioactive and non-toxic, and is naturally charged by daylight (UV light) so requires no batteries or electrical connections.

There are many uses for luminous concrete surfaces, especially in areas without power or prone to extended power outages. In the case of poor visibility it is ideally suited for areas of high traffic (vehicle or pedestrian) including sidewalks and kerbs for safety. It can also enhance architectural buildings, brighten hospital and airport car parks and also be used in remote areas where there is no electricity.

Martin Kay, Managing Director of Bespoke Concrete Products said: “We are delighted to have been asked to showcase Nitecrete™ in Malaysia. This is a first for Bespoke Concrete Products and we are thrilled with the interest in our new product. The exhibition is about building economies that are prepared for the future and we think Nitecrete™ is an ideal solution for this”.

Nitecrete™ has an international patent pending and is a Trademark of Bespoke Concrete Products.

Bespoke Concrete Products would like to thank the following for their assistance with the bringing Nitecrete™ to the world market:-

• Newcastle City Library – Business and Intellectual Property Centre

• Urquhart, Dykes and Lord LLP – Trademark and Patent Lawyers

• United Kingdom Trade and Investment (UKTI) – for their assistance with OMIS reports and the “passport to export” scheme

• Newcastle Science City – for their assistance with worldwide licensing agreements

• RTC North – for their assistance with our ongoing research into new concrete technology

 

BESPOKE CONCRETE TO ATTEND THE 4TH GLOBAL ENTREPRENEUR’S SUMMIT IN KUALA LUMPUR

It all started when a group of Malaysian delegates visited the UK back in July 2013 as part of a ground breaking Knowledge Exchange Programme tour of the UK organised by the UK based International Consultants for Entrepreneurship and Enterprise (ICE) and partners Corporate Capital Communications (CCC) of Malaysia. (see photo)

Martin Kay, Managing Director of Bespoke Concrete Products Ltd was invited to attend an event hosted by ICE at House of Lords in London to discuss economic prosperity through enterprise and education and met with the group of entrepreneurs.  By bringing together representatives of business from both continents new trading opportunities have emerged and Bespoke Concrete have since been looking at ways to expand into the Malaysian market.

Martin Kay will be visiting Malaysia in October to attend the 4th Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES 2013) in Kuala Lumpur which will feature a keynote address by US President Barack Obama.

The two-day summit, which was launched in 2009 by the President to spur job creation through entrepreneurship by connecting young innovators with resources and ideas, will be held at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre from October 11th.

Rock star entrepreneurs from all over the world, thought leaders, researchers and aspiring entrepreneurs will converge, meet, discuss, debate, share ideas, connect and network under the PETRONAS Twin Towers in dynamic Kuala Lumpur this October.  As its theme suggests, the 2013 Summit will be all about "Empowering & Connecting Entrepreneurs".

The Summit will be the catalyst for a series of world events where the entrepreneur will be placed firmly in the centre as leaders of economic development, with enabling support from government and the educational and finance sectors.

Bespoke Concrete Products are being supported by the North East branch of the UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and Arch: The Northumberland Development Company.

 

BESPOKE CONCRETE TO ATTEND THE 4TH INTERNATIONAL GREENTECH & ECHO PRODUCTS EXHIBITION (IGEM 2013) IN KUALA LUMPUR

Bespoke Concrete Products Ltd will be exhibiting at the 4th International Greentech & Echo Products Exhibition and Conference (IGEM 2013) at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre from the 10th - 13th October 2013. “Advancing Green Growth & Global Entrepreneurship” is the theme for 2013 in partnership with the 4th Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES).

MD Martin Kay will be travelling to Malaysia with Stuart Hedley, Research & Development Manager with a view to showcasing their new product which they are planning to license in Malaysia.

The product, which will be launched in the UK shortly, is eco-friendly with no carbon emissions. “IGEM 2013 is a perfect platform to launch our new product and creates the perfect opportunity to expand into the Malaysian market” Martin Kay .

Bespoke Concrete Products are being supported by the North East branch of the UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and Arch: The Northumberland Development Company.

 

ISO 14001 CERTIFICATION AWARDED

Bespoke Concrete are delighted to have successfully completed their first external audit for ISO 14001 accreditation.  ISO 14001 is a standard related to environmental management that exists to help businesses minimise how their operations negatively affect the environment, help them to comply with environmental laws and regulations  and continually improve upon these standards.   Environmental management Representative, Peter Redman, said “We are delighted to have received this accreditation.  Everyone has worked really hard to ensure that they are doing all they can in the workplace to reduce our carbon footprint.  It is the culmination of over a year of working towards recognition and proves that we are committed to manufacturing innovative products in and environmentally-responsible way.”  Martin Kay, Managing Director, added “It’s another great achievement for our team and I am very proud of the way our Company is embracing the environmental agenda”.

 

NEW STREET FURNITURE RANGE

Bespoke Concrete Products is delighted to announce the launch of the new range of street furniture. The range has been designed following the success of recent projects where Bespoke Concrete were asked to conceptualise some appropriate seating and planning arrangements for a variety of new build academic institutions. These resulting low maintenance products proved so popular, versatile and cost effective that Bespoke Concrete have now launched them on the internet to a much wider audience.

 

BESPOKE CONCRETE AWARDED INVESTORS IN PEOPLE RECOGNITION

Bespoke Concrete Products are delighted to announce that they have been awarded the prestigious Investors In People recognition. After setting the goal of being awarded accreditation they were delighted that after one day of intense interviews and assessments in March 2011 by an external Assessor, they received the Award.

Michelle Walton has worked closely with all employees over the past six months to ensure that the learning and development of the employees was of utmost priority. As ISO 9001 quality Manager Michelle saw the clear benefits of working towards IIP and how it would seamlessly fit into Bespoke Concrete Products current Quality Standards and in turn benefit not only the employees but also their growing Client base. Due to training procedures already in place underpinning service delivery to Clients, very little additional work was needed prior to the IIP assessment.

The IIP report commented

“ The company has a clear vision for the direction of the company and they are involving and developing their people as they move forward”

“The Company has a very strong training and teamwork ethos…”

“The commitment of staff……was remarkable considering the pace of change…”

“Bespoke Concrete has made great strides in making improvements in the way their people are managed and developed and they are reaping the benefits of this…..”

Martin Kay, Managing Director said in his summary to the employees "I would like to offer my sincere thanks to everyone for the work put in to achieving this prestigious status. Investors in People means exactly that, we are investing in people like you to make this business more successful which in turn helps to secure all of our futures, in terms of employment and personal growth and development. Well done to you all for an outstanding achievement”.

 

UNIVERSITY PARTNERSHIP – A SOLID SUCCESS

Bespoke Concrete Products turned to Sunderland University for help to develop a new step and shelf unit that is designed to be placed in a cellar to form a spiral staircase and shelving system for storing wine.

Staff from Sunderland Universities Business Gateway teamed up with Bespoke Concrete Products to successfully bid for funding from the Collaboration Innovation Partnership to work with the firm and Masters Graduate Stuart Hedley.

The latest computer design aided tools and advanced engineering techniques were used to complete the project.

Stuart, who studied Scientific Enterprise, was recruited to work in Bespoke Concrete Products for nine months.  The team then produced a final design that dramatically reduced the cement content whilst maintaining its integral strength.  This design is safe, eco friendly and competitively priced.

Martin Kay, Managing Director is delighted with the success of the partnership and business benefits.  He said, “through the partnership we have benefited from the resources and technical input on modelling and stress testing provided by the University.  This has enabled Bespoke Concrete Products to move from the conceptual idea stage through to a position where we are now able to manufacture the product for the international market place”.

Stuart Hedley was delighted to have worked with Bespoke Concrete Products saying “the project has provided the opportunity to apply the skills developed during my time at University in a real world business environment.  I have been given the freedom to get involved with all aspects of the business process from enquiry, organisation of production scheduling through to product delivery.  The best news however is that I have been offered the position of Production Controller with Bespoke Concrete Products that I am delighted to accept”.

 

COMPANY EXPANSION MOVES ON

Bespoke Concrete Products has moved from strength to strength facilitating expansion in difficult market conditions.

Bespoke Concrete Products are pretty much out on a limb when it comes to highly specialised cast stone and precast concrete products.  Just as the craftsmen are able to provide functional but aesthetically beautiful solutions to difficult situations, so our team of highly skilled artisans rise to the challenge of unusual projects requiring bespoke solutions.

“We go out on a limb” says Commercial Director Tony Kay “because that is where the fruit is”.

It is quite a turn around in fortunes for the company who had to scale back operations during the recession.  Technical Consultant Mike Moody commented, “In a market place where demand has slumped the worst possible thing we could have done was to drop our standards to compete.  Those companies that have taken the route of “buying in work” will have suffered because with limited budgets for production quality is always put at risk.”  We have not allowed ourselves to take this vicious path and we remain steadfast in our commitment to high quality work.

 

POLISHED OLYMPIC PERFORMERS

Concrete job offers have set a group of North East apprentices on the Olympic trail.

Bespoke Concrete Apprentices have worked on projects that include the manufacture of polished concrete waymarkers, unique benches based on the Greenwich Meridian and special tree planters for the London 2012 Olympics.  Flood defence components, products for the building industry are challenges being tackled by the expanding, Prudhoe based firm.

One of the region’s top training providers Access was selected to deliver the apprenticeships in modern manufacturing operations and a newly introduced qualification in Industrial Environment Awareness because of the expertise, flexibility and responsiveness it could offer.

A recently appointed apprentice said “Although we have just started we have been made to feel part of the set up very quickly.  There is a buddying system so each of us is working with someone with experience in the industry and at the company.  This is helping us to learn the ropes quickly and we are all really excited to be involved in this modern apprenticeship programme”.

Martin Kay, Managing Director at Bespoke Concrete Products added, “As we expand into new, more specialist markets, we need to increase our staff and feel that apprenticeships offer the best opportunity to do that as we can train the young people in our methods and production techniques.  Working with Sunderland University and Access Training we are researching and developing some eco projects to produce a more environmentally friendly concrete by using re-cycled raw materials such as glass, pulverised fly-ash from power stations and ground granulated blast furnace slag from smelters.  It is all designed to reduce the carbon footprint.

The company has also been involved in several other high profile projects such as The Newcastle & Gateshead Millennium Bridge, The Benedict Building in Sunderland and the refurbishment of the Hancock – now The Great North Museum in Newcastle upon Tyne.  Mel Taylor, Business Solutions Consultant with Access, commented: “ we are delighted to have secured this new contract and look forward to helping Bespoke Concrete Products develop its workforce and expand into new business areas.  We worked closely with the company to develop a training programme that best meets its needs and this project demonstrates perfectly how investment in the right training can help a business develop and grow successfully.

 

TREES GIVEN CONCRETE FUTURE

The reclamation of the Greenwich Peninsula involves Bespoke Tree Planters.

The Greenwich master plan was designed by Richard Rogers Partnership in 2002 and was awarded the Civic Trust Award for landscaping works (Greenwich Peninsula Master Plan) 2002.  The 300 acre plan includes 2 kilometres of publish space where tree lined promenades provide harmony between the built and natural environment.

The Peninsula was the home of many heavy industries, including petro-chemical activities.  As such concerns were raised over the possible contamination of land and the ability to plant, particularly the trees to thrive, Bespoke Concrete Products were engaged to provide the solution – giant concrete plant pots!

There are a number of concrete tree pits that have been fabricated off-site providing the opportunity of better planning and speedy installation.  Each casting weighs in at 7 tonnes and was made from LaFarge’s Agilia Force C50 concrete.  Martin, Bespoke’s man at the helm, commented, “we were given a tough task with this project.  The sheer weight of this casting made the mould design critical to the successful manufacture of these castings.  Each pit weights 7 tonnes, but once the section factor is accounted for the mass increases to an effective 10 tonnes”.  The castings have been excellent and it is a pity that they will be buried but as Longfellow wrote. “Think not that no man see, such things will remain unseen”.  We apply our craft to all products we manufacture.

As daylight goes the concrete glows

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BESPOKE CONCRETE

Tynedale Works, Princess Way, Low Prudhoe,  Northumberland, NE42 6PL

 

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