Wheatley Plastics is celebrating 70 years of UK manufacturing with an event being held at its plant in May. Founded in 1952 by Albert Wheatley, Wheatley Plastics began its life in his garage, where he manufactured buttons for Pacamac raincoats. From there the company grew, manufacturing iconic toys such as Playplax, and establishing itself across a wide, diverse range of market sectors – including heating, plumbing, medical and tableware. Now the Hazel Grove-based business founded 70 years ago employs 40 people with a turnover of £3.5 million expected this financial year.
In 2017, Wheatley Plastics moved to its new 22,000 square foot modern premises in Hazel Grove, Manchester with significant investment made in machinery and equipment to improve overall productivity. A £500k investment was made on refitting the new facility, including purchasing a state of the art material handling system. Wheatley Plastics’ previous location was half the size of their new premises and could not facilitate the world class environment the business requires due to its size, layout, and presentation. Further, the move was necessitated by Wheatley acquiring business which required a large moulding machine whose footprint would have been too large for the previous factory location. Wheatley Plastics has ambitious growth plans, with an achievable forecast of £5 million in 2024.
Gary Knight, Managing Director of Wheatley Plastics said: “The vision of the business is to become world-class in everything we do. We are proud of our heritage and are passionate about UK manufacturing. Overall, the last four years have been the most challenging; however, we firmly believe that the foundations are now in place to create a world-class manufacturing organisation. This business is built on strong values with relationships central to everything we do. Celebrating our 70 years in business seems the ideal opportunity to open up our doors and celebrate the achievement!”
Wheatley Plastics will be holding a celebration on the 25th May, hosting invited guests at their factory. This celebration will also be attended by Wheatley’s long-standing industry partners Spitfire AMS, In Touch, Campetella, and Borche.