17 November 2010

John Parker and Son Ltd (Parker Steel) and Shoreham Port are investing in a new steel processing plant on the port. Work has now commenced on site and is due to finish in 15 months time.

The new facility will be one of the largest buildings in Sussex and will be used to store and process steel to customer requirements. The new building will have an overall gross internal floor area of 15,150 sqm.  The site itself extends to 4.8 hectares (11.9 acres). The scheme was granted planning permission in 2008 but the start had been delayed due to the economic recession.

The plant is due to become fully operational in February 2012, and Managing Director of Parker Steel, Guy Parker, believes this will coincide with an expected increase in the demand for structural steel.

He comments:  "We are very excited about the benefits that this new site will offer us, not least the benefits passed on to the local community - we hope to eventually employ a significant number of people. This modern facility will allow us to automate fully the importation and processing of steel, increasing efficiency and cost benefits, which will enable us to grow further."

Rodney Lunn, Chief Executive of Shoreham Port says "we are delighted that Parker Steel are going ahead with this exciting project as the development is an important part of the port's future. Our port masterplan has recently been completed and the Parker Steel building will be the first major development that the community will see and benefit from under this plan."

Leading property consultant Cluttons has been appointed project manager for the £9 million development.

Ian Alexander, a partner in Cluttons' Project and Building Consultancy Division comments: "We are delighted that our expertise is contributing to the transformation of a local business. The size of this facility is significant and given that the hiatus in the construction process is now over, it would seem that the pickup in the market is filtering down to projects on the ground."

The contractors for the scheme are Mitchell Design and Construction Ltd, who have extensive experience in this type of construction.