Tuesday, March 28, 2017

News: Rotherham-based Macalloy back at the FIFA World Cup


Rotherham manufacturer, Macalloy is heading back to the FIFA World Cup, working on stadium projects for tournament hosts, Russia and Qatar.

Dinnington-based Macalloy are world leaders in design, manufacture and supply of threaded bar and cable systems to engineering and construction projects across the globe. Approximately 80% of the company's turnover is from export.

Barclays has provided both term debt and working capital to Macalloy, which employs over 90 staff, in a bid to further boost exports. Turnover for the current year is expected to exceed £11m.

Peter Hoy, chief executive officer of Macalloy, said: "We've been trading successfully overseas for some time now but we're always looking for new projects and the funding from Barclays has enabled us to finalise an exciting deal working on Russia stadia in time for the World Cup 2018.

"We are delighted to be involved with five of the Stadia and we are now planning ahead to 2022 and Qatar. We have already completed the refurbishment of the Al Khalifa stadium where we were first involved with the renovation in 2006 and the Asian games.

"We are now seeing enquiries for the remaining stadia both refurbishments and new builds and are hoping that our experience working on the 2018 stadia will be an excellent reference for future work."


Macalloy has a history with the most widely viewed and followed sporting event in the world having supplied its threaded bar and cable systems to the Soccer City Stadium, the centrepiece to the World Cup in South Africa in 2010 and the venue for the final. The Olympia Stadion in Berlin, the venue for the 2006 World Cup final, used approximately 100t of galvanised Macalloy 460 tie rods to act as bracing within the steel work supporting the main membrane roof structure.

Often selected by architects for there aesthetic appeal, innovative products from Macalloy are used to provide strength in bridges, airports and buildings including the Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai and the Marina Bay Sands development in Singapore.

Other stadia strengthened by Macalloy include the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit, the redeveloped Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida and the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.
Neil Bradburne, Barclays relationship director, said: "With the recent exchange rate movement, UK manufacturers now have a worldwide appeal and it's good to see a local company taking advantage of market conditions and expanding for the future.

"This deal is pivotal for the business and I hope we see more South Yorkshire businesses taking advantage of overseas trading, expanding for the future which in turn will benefit the economy and create more jobs locally."

Macalloy moved to the former Rotherham colliery site at Dinnington from Sheffield in November 2006 as part of their continued expansion.

Macalloy website
Barclays website

Images: Crocus Group


News: City Taxis make Rotherham acquisition


Expanding Sheffield cab firm, City Taxis, has acquired Rotherham-based Skyline Taxis under its Northern Taxis brand, which has also opened new premises in the borough.

The deal, for an undisclosed sum, comes as the Barclays-backed, £10m turnover company launches in the Rotherham area. City bought Chesterfield's Club Taxis in September 2016 and acquired Ace Taxis of Barnsley in July last year, preserving work for local drivers and call centre staff jobs.

Skyline, based in Wath, has been operating for nine years and currently runs 35 cars. All call centre staff and drivers will become part of rapidly growing Northern Taxis, which handles around six million journeys a year.

175 of City Taxis' current 1,750 drivers already live in Rotherham.


Arnie Singh, managing director of Northern Taxis Ltd (pictured, left), said: "Continuing the trend of last year, we are pleased to announce another acquisition furthering our services around South Yorkshire by expanding into the Rotherham area from our new headquarters in Greasborough.

"We look forward to offering our services to the people and businesses of Rotherham.

"Customers booking journeys will be able to do so through our user-friendly app, and Rotherham businesses will now be able to open corporate accounts, giving customers access to a modern, efficient, friendly and safe taxi service which makes a huge contribution to the economy and community of South Yorkshire.

"All of our Rotherham drivers will be subject to enhanced DBS checks and will have CCTV in their cabs – reassuring drivers and customers alike, and rebuilding confidence in the private hire sector in the town.

"Rotherham Council have welcomed our arrival, recognising that this thriving area of call centres is currently under-served by a taxi service. Skyline have been going for nine years and this move allows us to expand our customer base from their current 35 cars. All jobs will be protected."

Mehmood Hussein of Skyline (pictured, right), added: "We are pleased to have struck a deal with City Taxis and hope that moving forward our drivers and staff will see a real benefit from working within a much larger organisation."

Launching in 1996, City has seen a 300% growth in staff since 2010: over 102 call centre operators now support over 1,750 drivers, making it the third largest independent taxi firm in the UK.

City Taxis website

Images: City Taxis


News: Wentworth deal "a triumph against all the odds"


The acquisition of Wentworth Woodhouse in Rotherham for £7m by a charitable trust represents a "third way" in the chequered ownership history of the Grade I listed mansion.

Despite the best efforts of two public sector owners and two private owners, of the UK's most interesting and important country houses has ultimately proved too expensive for either the public or the private sector to maintain. In 2012, working with entrepreneurs Kit Martin and Roger Tempest, SAVE Britain's Heritage (SAVE), the campaign group for historic buildings, therefore devised a third way, which involves a variety of compatible uses generating income to keep the listed buildings in repair, with the mansion placed in a charitable trust to maximise fundraising potential.

It culminated in the Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust (WWPT) finally completing the deal for the house, follies and 83 acres from the Newbold family after five years of complex work and lawyers advising that the deal was so complicated it could never normally be done.


Marcus Binney, executive president of SAVE, said: "This is a triumph against all the odds. It is a deal which the lawyers advised was so complicated it could never normally be done. It has taken five years of sustained hard work to secure support, but we have learnt over 40 years that however hopeless or impossible the battle for a great historic building may seem we should never give up.

"Huge thanks are due to Julie Kenny, chair of Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust, and her trustees who against precipitous deadlines have secured all the complex agreements needed to complete purchase.

"We also thank the Newbold family for their help, cooperation and patience while the rescue plan has been drawn up and the necessary funding secured. Clifford Newbold was the first to open this great house to visitors giving huge pleasure and excitement to everyone who came."

Earlier the house was acquired in 1989 by Mr Wensley Haydon-Baillie who provided a £10m endowment and carried out repairs.


After World War II Wentworth Woodhouse was offered by the 8th Earl Fitzwilliam to the National Trust but was too large and expensive for the Trust to take on. Surrounded by open-cast coal mining the house was saved from demolition as a PT teacher training college sponsored by a member of the Fitzwilliam family Lady Mabel.

Now the National Trust is supporting the Trust's plans for the house and has promised £750,000 over the first three years of opening. The aim is preserve the house and grounds on a long term sustainable basis and raise funds for repairs and other essential works. The total cost of repairs could be over £50m.

Parts of Wentworth Woodhouse will continue to be open to public while phased repairs continue. The WWPT's plans include using the North wing to host a huge range of weddings and events and the stables (pictured, below) as units for dynamic small businesses. Within the 18th century house and outbuildings more than a dozen apartments and cottages will be restored as lets for holiday makers.
Previous owners, the Newbold family said in a statement: "Wentworth Woodhouse has been an important part of our lives for nearly two decades and although there is some sadness in having to say goodbye, our greatest wish,which was always to see that its future was secure, has at last been fulfilled.

"We would like to publicly express our thanks to all the staff and volunteers who have worked so hard and with such dedication to help us save the house over the years. Additionally, we are extremely grateful to the public for their overwhelming support in our efforts to secure the future of this national treasure. We wish the trust, the staff and everyone involved in the forthcoming restoration every success in the preservation of this fabulous house with which we fell in love with so many years ago.

"As a family, we very much look forward to seeing the house continue to recover after suffering so much abuse in the 20th century. There has always been tremendous local support for the house and it is heartening to know that the project on which we have all been working for so long is finally safe and secure."

Wentworth Woodhouse website
WWPT website
SAVE website

Images: Savills


Monday, March 27, 2017

News: Wentworth Woodhouse deal done


The Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust (WWPT) has concluded the acquisition of Wentworth Woodhouse in Rotherham for £7m.

The deal includes one of the UK's most interesting and important Grade 1 listed country houses, its outstanding collection of classical statuary and the surrounding grounds of 83 acres.

The Newbold family, who had been in a long-running legal battle with the Coal Authority, confirmed that they had decided to sell the historic house at the end of 2014. With an asking price of in excess of £8m, a deal was confirmed in February 2016 with the WWPT who have raised funds and developed a long term strategy for the future of the site.

The largest privately-owned house in Europe was added to the 2016 World Monuments Watch which calls international attention to cultural heritage under threat around the globe.

The efforts to secure the house were given national prominence when the Chancellor of the Exchequer pulled a rabbit out of the hat in his 2016 Autumn Statement by announcing a £7.6m Government grant towards urgent repairs.

A grant of £3.5m from the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF) has been confirmed, providing the Trust with the final piece of the financial jigsaw needed to purchase the property.

A previous deal to sell the property to an investor, fell through.


The Government grant is subject to the approval of a sustainable business case for a secure future of "the big house." As well as welcoming visitors to the richly decorated rooms in the house, WWPT's longer-term plan is to: restore the gardens with the help of volunteers; attract local businesses to work in offices to be created in the stables; and work with local people to explore and describe its exceptionally rich history, telling some of the many colourful stories associated with the house.

Heritage Minister Tracey Crouch said: "The UK's heritage is world renowned for its unique variety and Wentworth Woodhouse is a fantastic example of our historic architecture that deserves to be protected for the future. This Government funding will not only help preserve the building for visitors to enjoy, but it will also be a vital link in the community, creating a business hub and jobs that will benefit the local area."
Julie Kenny, Chair of the Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust (WWPT), added: "This is the culmination of five years very hard work and has been made possible by the support of many different charities, government bodies and individuals, including the Chancellor of the Exchequer. It is great news for the people of Rotherham and for everyone who cares about historic buildings.

"We are grateful to the Newbold family for their part in ensuring the survival of the house, and to the funding bodies who have made the transfer possible."

These include the National Heritage Memorial Fund, The Monument Trust, Sir Siegmund Warburg's Voluntary Settlement, the J Paul Getty Jr Charitable Trust, Art Fund, together with donations from the Fitzwilliam Amenity Trust and Lady Juliet Tadgell. The Trust has been given significant support by Historic England, the Architectural Heritage Fund, Heritage Lottery Fund and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. The Trust will also receive invaluable support and guidance from the National Trust for a period of three years.


Kenny added: "All these contributors share our determination to give Wentworth Woodhouse a secure future, so it can play a part in the economic and cultural regeneration of Rotherham and the wider South Yorkshire region.

"We would like to send our appreciation to John Healey MP who helped open doors for discussions with Ministers and civil servants. We also appreciate the important cross party support from John Healey and Robert Jenrick MP who helped us put the Trust's case personally to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Above all we are grateful to the Chancellor who shares our enthusiasm for the house, and who announced a special allocation of £7.6m for repairs in his Autumn Statement in 2016. This will enable work to start this year."

Under the ownership of the WWPT, the restoration and development will provide jobs, stimulate local employment and open the property to the public on a regular basis. The North wing is set to host a huge range of weddings and events and the stables will become home to dynamic small businesses. Within the 18th century house and outbuildings more than a dozen apartments and cottages will be restored as lets for holiday makers.

The aim is preserve the house and grounds on a long term sustainable basis and raise funds for repairs and other essential works. The total cost of repairs could be over £50m. Parts of Wentworth Woodhouse will continue to be open to public while phased repairs continue.

Ros Kerslake, chief executive of National Heritage Memorial Fund, said: "Wentworth Woodhouse is an incredibly important piece of our national heritage, which is why the trustees of the National Heritage Memorial Fund agreed £3.5m funding that has now helped secure its future for the nation. As well as ensuring the house and grounds are open to the public, the Trust's ambitious plans will create jobs, apprenticeships, training and volunteering opportunities for many years to come."

Wentworth Woodhouse website
WWPT website

Images: WWPT / Savills


News: Plans for new 75,000 sq ft unit on the AMP


A planning application has been submitted for a new 75,000 sq ft factory on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham with all the signs pointing towards it being for supercar manufacturer, McLaren.

Rothbiz reported last month that a space is being readied on the UK's premier advanced manufacturing park for a multimillion pound Composites Technology Centre responsible for the development and manufacturing of advanced carbon fibre chassis for McLaren Automotive's supercars.

Drawn up for developer, Harworth Group plc by Barton Willmore and The Harris Partnership, the plans show images of a purpose-built facility for McLaren on a 1.98 hectare site off Whittle Way where Harworth is preparing for the next commercial development - AMPlify, a further 460,000 sq ft of prime space on the AMP.

The site has recently been engineered to form a number of flat plateaus and the proposed development includes the creation of a single 75,000 sq ft building for B1, B2 and B8 uses (including ancillary B1a Offices) along with associated access, parking, and servicing, landscaping and other infrastructure.


Matching other buildings on the site in terms of design, the new facility "will provide a contemporary addition" to the AMP - already dubbed "the elite "Mayfair" address for advanced manufacturing."

The Composites Technology Centre will be responsible for the research and development of future Monocell and Monocage carbon fibre chassis for McLaren Automotive, as well as the manufacturing of the chassis itself. These carbon fibre "tubs" are now in their second generation and have recently been unveiled as the key feature of McLaren's new 720S.

The centre is set to create more than 200 jobs and will comprise approximately 150 production staff and 50 manufacturing support staff. Recruitment is already underway.


Construction on the facility is due to start this year with the first pre-production chassis, built using trial manufacturing processes in the nearby Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) with Boeing, expected to be delivered to the McLaren Technology Centre in the second half of 2017. Full production at the facility will begin by 2020.

The site is within the Sheffield City Region Enterprise Zone which means that businesses benefit from fast-track planning alongside business rate relief and enhanced capital allowances.
The plans state: "The proposals offer an exciting opportunity to the area that will further enhance the AMP and continue to assist in the economic development and regeneration of this area including the wider AMID."

The Sheffield-Rotherham Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID) has the aim of developing Europe's largest research-led advanced manufacturing cluster where leading names like McLaren, Roll-Royce and Boeing, work alongside local innovators and research institutions.

The idea builds on the ethos of the AMP where the park and adjoining commercial developments at Waverley will create over 3,500 new jobs and add an estimated £300m in Gross Value Added to the local economy once fully developed.

McLaren website

Images: McLaren / Harris Partnership

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