Minor fire at Clays

Jo Francis
Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Workers at Clays successfully extinguished a small fire that broke out on one of its Timson web presses in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Chief executive Paul Hulley said disruption had been minimal at the Bungay book printer.

“A bearing overheated on a folder in the web room. The machine crew put the flames out very quickly – well before the brigade arrived, but it caused quite a bit of smoke so the evacuation lasted a couple of hours,” he explained.

“It was a very small fire and the machine concerned was back in production by last night. So no impact at all.”

Suffolk Fire & Rescue Service sent two appliances to the scene, one from Bungay and one from Beccles.

Clays is the UK’s biggest single-site book printer, typically producing around 150m books a year. The firm had sales of £76.5m last year and employs around 700 staff running a large range of conventional and digital printing equipment.

The business was acquired from St Ives by Italian firm Elcograf, part of the Pozzoni Group, in a £23.8m deal in May.

The book trade is gearing up for ‘Super Thursday’ this week, when hundreds of new titles will be published in anticipation of the Christmas sales boost.


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