Polton Glass in line for its biggest contract

Date: 19 July 2011
Source: http://www.nebusiness.co.uk
A TEESSIDE double glazing firm is in line for its biggest contract, which would increase its workforce by 50%.

Polton Glass, based at Commercial Street at the foot of the Transporter Bridge, will hear this week about the deal with Vela Group, which runs Housing Hartlepool and Tristar Homes in Stockton.

The work would need another 30 staff across all departments, adding to the 60 they already have.

The company was created when the management team bought the company from Pilkington Glass in 1998 and is co-owned by former Boro footballer Jamie Pollock. His sales director Brian Gallagher said the company was now taking in 20 tonnes of glass a day. One of the key secrets to their success is that thanks to a seamless investment strategy that glass is not toughened but goes through that process in the company’s own toughening furnace - a huge investment, but one which enables them to keep their customer costs low.

“We’re making hundreds of windows each week, so the £200,000 to £300,000 we have invested recently is a sound move,” said Brian.

“We have a strong domestic market, but the commercial and social housing work we have done recently - with Wimpey and Keepmoat and at Cargo Fleet - is key to the business. We are also doing some student accommodation and have even got work on part of a contract in Dundee. We hope the Vela contract can stay local and we can offer another 30 jobs.”

That shrewd investment recently included the room-sized Stuga machine in one corner of their large site. For £250,000 this machine will cut and drill the long lengths of profile into the sections that make up each window.

The furnace and Stuga facilities coupled with the move to A-rated performance and police-approved “secured by design” fittings has helped the company establish its reputation.

Brian has been in the industry for close on 40 years - following his dad who was Everest’s first rep in the North-east - and has seen many changes. It is emblematic of the company that it still offers leaded-light designs, though - but they are now made of coloured sections of one single piece of glass.

“Traditional crafts brought right up to date” wouldn’t be out of place written over the door on Commercial Street.

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