What’s new? Local business highlights

July 10, 2017 10:51 am

Invest Ashfield & Mansfield - The area for growth

Here’s a news round-up of some of the movers and shakers across Ashfield and Mansfield.  Our businesses are growing, investing and becoming more resilient.  Of course, we would love to shout about your firm’s success too.  So, if you have something to share, please contact us.  Equally we’d like to spread this news as far as possible.  So please feel free to share our news or let others know that they can easily subscribe to our newsletters.

Lindhurst Engineering

Martin Rigley MBE has recently been appointed to the Chamber’s Board.  Two other appointments were made at the same time.

Martin joined the family business of Lindhurst Engineering, at Sutton-in-Ashfield, in 1994.  He was previously an electrical engineer for British Coal.  He is the current Chair of the N2 Skills & Employment Board, volunteers as a sector specialist for Nottingham & Nottingham Trent Universities and also a Governor at Vision Studio School, Mansfield.

Phil Stanyer is Chairman of the Board of Directors at East Midlands Chamber.  Phil said: “Making sure that we have the right people on the Board of Directors, ensuring a balance across all sectors and with the widest possible experience is essential.  This helps to ensure the Chamber has the expertise to speak authoritatively on a diverse range of topics.

“I’m delighted to welcome Eileen, Martin and Lindsey to the Board and look forward to working with them.  They will bring new experience and new expertise and help ensure the Chamber remains dynamic in a rapidly changing world.”

Martin commented: “I am passionate about the great things businesses do in this region.  And I see this opportunity to join the Board as a way to champion and support the activities of East Midlands businesses regionally, nationally and internationally.”

NM Group


North Midland Construction is a provider of civil engineering, building, mechanical and electrical services to public and private organisations.  They announced a sizeable increase in profits in last year’s results (ending 31st December 2016).

The firm’s operating profit increased to £2.24 million from £847,000 in 2015, growth of 164.6%. Revenue also increased to £250.49 million from £217.61m, growth of 15.11%.  From its head office in Nottinghamshire, the firm operates nationally with strategically located regional offices across the country.

John Homer is NM Group’s Chief Executive.  John said: “These results demonstrate considerable strategic advancement.  Progress continues, strengthening the quality of the service provided to our customers.  And we are also receiving positive feedback on our operational performance from all our stakeholders.

“Our strategy is focused on prospering through the careful selection and execution of the work taken on. There are positive signs of continued growth in our chosen market sectors.  And our forward order book is at £225m, which is 80% of this year’s budgeted turnover.  There is also a healthy pipeline of future opportunities which is very encouraging.

“Our people are the overarching differentiator and driver for continued success.  We will maintain our investment in our talent pool’s developmen.  During the last year alone we have recruited over 400 new people.  The outlook for our future trading remains positive and provides the opportunity to further improve earnings. We anticipate an improving performance for 2017 and beyond”.

The company’s building division has had a good trading year with improved profitability on the back of a rapid period of growth over the last three years.  The division’s revenue for the year reached £23.39 million, an increase of 107.8%.  And operating profit has risen to £575,000, an increase of 209% compared to last year.

New contract

North Midland Construction celebrating as they have a new joint venture infrastructure contract for Severn Trent Water.  The contract is for the Birmingham Resilience Project, which is worth in excess of £100m.  The scheme, which will start on-site soon, will be delivered over the next three years.  North Midland will design and build a new water treatment plant at Frankley.

As a result, North Midland say the results for the year to 31st December 2017 are now expected to be ahead of management expectations.

John Homer is Chief Executive of North Midland.  He said: “This is a fantastic flagship project to be awarded with one of our key customers and is a testament to the specialist capabilities that our group have developed”.


Subsidiary of the group, Nomenca, has appointed Gavin Stonard as its new Engineering Director.  In his new role, Gavin will lead the company’s engineering services offering.  Moreover, his primary responsibilities will be the development of Nomenca’s engineering and asset optimisation services.  Indeed, this will provide a holistic asset lifecycle service, bringing together existing expertise in design, software development, off-site build, installation, commissioning, operation and maintenance to develop TotEx solutions for clients.  He has an extensive knowledge of the UK and European water sectors and was previously a Director of Sweco UK.

Nomenca has been trading since 1998 and is a specialist service provider, offering engineering services, design and construction, operation and maintenance of assets in industries including mechanical, electrical, water and engineering.

Andy Langman is Managing Director of Nomenca.  Andy said: “I am really pleased that Gavin has joined Nomenca. His wealth of knowledge and expertise within the water sector will significantly help drive TotEx solutions and further efficiencies for our customers as well as delivering engineering excellence”.

John Homer added: “With the appointment of Gavin to strengthen our senior management and further investment in our complete life cycle offering, we see the potential for additional customer and market opportunities to progress our strategic growth plan”.


If you read last month’s business update post, you will already know about Sockmine, a branch of the long-established firm Roy Lowe & Sons.  Moreover, last month’s business highlights included more about how the firm is supporting a cycling academy headed up by former Olympian Bryan Steel.

Roy Lowe & Sons is a family business.  Whilst everything the company produced until 2000 was manufactured on-site in the UK, the firm started importing from Turkey, India and China in 2006.  When the current generation joined the firm, there were discussions about manufacturing in the UK again, albeit on a small scale.  Now, about 5% of sales is manufactured in the UK.

Basically, there are  two new branches of the business – Roy’s Boys, a range of fashion socks, and SockMine.  The company has around 30 employees, with 10-12 working on the UK manufacturing side.  SockMine is a range of technical sports socks designed to meet the specific needs of particular sporting activities.  Ambassadors from a variety of different sporting backgrounds, including Bryan Steel, help the firm with product development.

Technical expertise

By teaming up with elite sportspeople the firm is able to create bespoke socks that meet the precise requirements of each activity. For example, blister reducing running socks incorporating patented Griplock technology.  Griplock also prevents the socks from falling down, and feedback from ambassadors was crucial to its development.

The partnership with the Bryan Steel Academy works very well.  Bryan suggests the socks provide what the sports world calls “marginal gains”.  While the benefits may seem small at first glance, they can give you an edge when you add everything up.

In ten years, the company wants to be the go-to sock brand for top-end sports people. Moreover, the firm has the technical expertise to make this happen.  Ultimately, they want to be manufacturing everything in the UK, expanding each range and making socks for a variety of different sports and activities.

Textile industry

The industry is picking up in the UK, but retailers need to start backing it a bit more.  Consumers are used to “fast fashion” now and we almost have an idea of disposable clothing.  This needs to change. Buying British would mean paying more for each item but, of course, the quality would be so much better.

There are definitely still skills locally.  However, since most of the skilled workers are in their 40s and 50s,  there’s a gap. As a result, the company has to do everything in-house, with younger people learning from the older ones.  Of course, that can be quite challenging for a small business.  The company already takes student placements and interns and also plans to offer apprenticeships in the future.

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