Factory unveils new hi-tech equipment and jobs with help of a £170k investment

L-R: Karl Prosser, Mark Wheddon, head of delivery at the University, Maggie Throup and Darren Barker, welder/fabricator at Dales, at the penultimate part of the process where the coating is applied.

An Ilkeston company which makes aluminium products for the building industry has unveiled its latest state-of-the-art investment.

Dales Fabrications has installed a polyester powder coating plant which applies attractive hard-wearing finishes to the aluminium products it manufactures at its factory in Crompton Road.

Industry specialists and Erewash MP Maggie Throup were among guests who attending the unveiling on Friday (Nov 30).

Karl Prosser, managing director of Dales, said the new equipment, costing £170,000, is a massive upgrade of a limited capacity that the company had up to now and will will help speed up the process.

The cost includes a grant of £42,500 from a Government fund managed by the University of Derby that provides loans and grants to businesses across the East Midlands which are looking to grow.

This is because the company is creating two jobs with another two expected to follow in the next couple of years.

Under the scheme the university will offer other services such as apprenticeships, knowledge exchange, research and product testing as part of a continuing relationship.

Dales has received endorsement from Syntha Pulvin, a multi-national company that provides the powder products. Dales is one of only 26 companies in Britain to have this approval.

It will be using a chemical pre-treatment which is more environmentally-friendly, ahead of new legislation which will be introduced in three years that bans chromium products.

The company makes bespoke aluminium products, including fascias, soffits, and rainwater systems that enhance the appearance of a variety of buildings. It has an order book at an all-time high going into 2019 with work approaching £1.5m in value.

Maggie, who has a scientific background, said: “The chemistry behind this is really exciting and at the same time it’s allowing Dales to have complete control of the quality of their excellent and innovative products.

“I’m delighted that this will result in more people being employed locally. It’s always good news to see local businesses expanding.”