Wyndeham closes Gait in multi-site revamp

By Jo Francis, Wednesday 22 April 2015

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Wyndeham Group has closed its Wyndeham Gait factory in Grimsby as part of a wider restructure of its sheetfed and web facilities that will involve significant expansion at one site.


Gait had produced a range of products including brochures and manuals

The group closed the historic printworks, which dated back to 1860 under its original name of Albert Gait, earlier this month with the loss of 34 jobs.

“Demand for sheetfed printing is reducing overall and we had to make a hard choice about where to reduce our capacity,” said Wyndeham Group chief executive Paul Utting. “We simply didn’t have enough work to fill all our capacity.”

Gait had produced a range of sheetfed products including railway timetables and car manuals.

“With the agreement of customers our intention is to move the work into our Roche and Grange facilities,” Utting added.

The £120m-turnover group is also making 15 redundancies at its Grange sheetfed factory in West Sussex, taking the number of employees there to 55.

Grange runs five multi-colour B1 sheetfed presses including two Komori double-decker super perfectors, and a range of binding kit. 

Some equipment from Grange is likely to be sold, but Utting said the details are still to be decided.

The Gait kit will also be sold, although Wyndeham could retain some of the plant’s specialist binding equipment within the group. Wyndeham also owns the Gait site, part of which is Grade II listed. It is to be sold for redevelopment.

Separately, Wyndeham is expanding the production capacity at its Roche facility in St Austell.

The 12-colour Speedmaster with CutStar the group acquired along with other assets of the failed Global MP business is to be installed at the site, as are the Manroland Lithoman web from the shuttered Heron facility and a binding line from the Maldon plant.

“The Lithoman should be running by July ready for the August and September busy season,” Utting said. “There is a bit of resurgence in demand [for web print]; it’s not falling at the same rate as it was.

“A number of large catalogues have already reserved capacity for later in the year, and we already have a very busy programme in November and December.”

Around 30 new jobs are likely to be created at Roche. 

Wyndeham’s Peterborough web offset facility also has a new boss. Lindsay Atkinson, who was formerly managing director at Polestar Bicester and BGP, has joined the business as managing director following a period where Peterborough was overseen by chief operating officer Roy Kingston.

“With the Peterborough site growing through the addition of the short-grain press from Bradford and work from Heron we needed a full-time person there,” Utting explained. “Lindsay has very good experience of managing large sites dealing with a lot of time-sensitive work.”


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