Gardner Denver celebrates 45 years of British manufacturing
Published:  14 August, 2015

Vacuum pump and compressor manufacturer, Gardner Denver, recently celebrated 45 years of British manufacturing at its Redditch factory, with an open week for current and former employees, customers, and local dignitaries.

Held at the company’s Centre of Excellence in Redditch, the event marks Gardner Denver’s status as one of the few remaining manufacturers of air compressors in the UK, with local MP, Karen Lumley as well as Mayor of Redditch, Pattie Hill both joining in the celebrations.

The company is a major employer in the local area, with over 300 people currently working on site producing world-recognised products including Hydrovane, which has been produced on the site since the early 70s, together with the 160-year-old Belliss & Morcom brand and long-standing Reavell range.

Karen Lumley, MP for Redditch County who visited the site commented: “I’m proud to be able to celebrate the continued success of a local manufacturing company here in the Midlands, a company with a worldwide export market supported by a strong local supply chain.

“I’m also a big believer in apprenticeships and preparing young people for the world of work and companies like Gardner Denver, which are helping to create sustainable employment and encourage more young people in to a career in engineering, should be recognised for the positive contribution they are making to the economy.”

Commenting on the apprentice scheme, Ben Sweet, who has just completed his four-year apprenticeship with Belliss & Morcom added: “Taking up an apprenticeship means you can get ahead while you’re working and I’m always learning something new. Working in engineering means no two days are the same and you benefit from the experience of those around you."

Visitors to the open week had the chance to meet former and existing employees, including the company’s latest intake of graduates and apprentices. A factory tour was also on offer where people could witness first hand how the company’s compressors are manufactured and see two brand new machines, launched specially for the event - the high-pressure WH35 for food and beverage customers and the Hydrovane air solution for industrial air applications.

Commenting on the open week, Colin Mander, regional director for Gardner Denver, said he welcomed all the open day visitors who joined the company in celebrating its long history of manufacturing air compressors in Redditch - a site he added that’s rich in engineering heritage: “We’ve witnessed many changes since the site opened in the 1970s and many engineering firsts, including the world’s first vertical compressor design, the development of machines that run without the need for lubricating oil and a wide range of energy-saving innovations.

“The event offered former employees the chance to see how our products have developed over the years…”

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