Russell Roof Tiles celebrates decade of growth

Russell Roof Tiles celebrates decade of growth

Andrew Hayward, managing director of Russell Roof Tiles

Lochmaben-based roof tile manufacturer Russell Roof Tiles has celebrated a decade of growth since it became an independent company.

Originally founded in its current 11-acre site in Halleaths, Lochmaben in 1964 as The Annandale Tile Company, the manufacturer now employs nearly 60 staff in its Scottish plant.

The company was acquired by Russell Building Products Ltd from CEMEX to Crown Global Equity which manufactures concrete roof tiles in the US and Mexico.

Andrew Hayward as managing director and his senior team has since led a decade of change across the firm’s three sites, from new product innovation, significant capital investment, new training facilities, a boosted technical team and investment in its staff.

Over £24 million has been invested in developing and maintaining its sites and plants, to improve production speeds, increase capacity, introduce new lines, and upgrade machinery.

The Lochmaben site in particular has benefitted recently from an electrical upgrade and mechanical improvements across key machinery. In addition to which, new moulds have been purchased for the Lochmaben production line.

The company has increased its technical capabilities with a boosted dedicated technical team of four (increased from one), on hand to support customers. Graduate and apprenticeship programmes have been introduced to help tackle the skills gap and nurture the talent of tomorrow. The firm now has its own dedicated training facility on site as well as offering RIBA CPD programme.

Russell Roof Tiles has also a developed its own set of core company values and invested in supporting communities and staff local to its sites in Lochmaben and Burton-on-Trent. The company has created a community fund, provided student bursaries, staff match funding programmes and donated over £110,000 to causes and community projects.

Over the last 10 years, the company’s commitment to sustainability has also grown enormously. More recently the firm pushed ahead on its own green trajectory with its latest plans to become net zero by 2040.

Mr Hayward said: “In 2013, we set ambitious targets to drive down waste, recycle more, reduce energy consumption, and minimise our carbon footprint. Part of that push towards an improved sustainability performance involved making significant investment to ensure the business is fit for the future.”

In 2015, the company became the first UK roof tile manufacturer to achieve an ‘Excellent’ rating for responsible sourcing, recognising the company’s dedication to sustainability.

Mr Hayward added: “We have to lead by example and make our green commitment clear to customers, whilst encouraging wider supply chains to do the same.”

The firm was one of the first manufacturers to expand its selection of thinner, cutting-edge designs to match the indigenous look planning teams required. It also launched “blends” designed to give a random effect across the whole roof, giving a traditional look but with the commercial benefits concrete provides.

Additionally expanding its product portfolio has enabled the company to be specified on massive projects such as those for the MOD as well Centre Parcs Leisure Project in Woburn with 750,000 Grampian profile products and accessories.

The company remains optimistic about the future despite widespread labour and material shortages as well as rising costs, inflation, and tax increases.

“Over the last few years I have been delighted to lead such a dedicated team at Russell Roof Tiles, who have continued to innovate and achieve far above expectations,” Mr Hayward said.

“Despite the current short-term challenges our sector faces I believe we can continue to transform our business to improve manufacturing efficiencies, and develop better products delivered in a more sustainable way and we’re looking forward to another decade of success.”

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