New jobs hope as Nelson firm moves into new factory

Staff at Riggs Autopack have started work in their impressive new factory in Nelson following the company’s move across town.
Riggs new factory in Nelson (S)Riggs new factory in Nelson (S)
Riggs new factory in Nelson (S)

The company – which is part of the Fort Vale Group which used to be based in Nelson but now operates from a large site in Simonstone – has re-located from Southfield Street to Premier Mill in Brunswick Street.

Established in the 1930s, the company manufactures high-quality depositors and filling machines for the food production industry.

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Over the years, Riggs Autopack’s equipment has improved the production processes for a large number of food manufacturers, and helped them meet growing demand for their goods.

In 2011 and 2012 they received two highly prestigious awards – Company of the Year and Industry Excellence by Business and Industry Today.

Providing a friendly and professional service, they employ an experienced and highly-skilled team of 28.

The move gives Riggs the room to further expand, win new orders and potentially recruit more personnel in key areas.

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David Smith, technical director at Fort Vale, said: “Hopefully that’s the last move and we can grow with alacrity from now on.

“There is room to take on more projects at the same time and space to do much more fabrication, which means we can move forward far quicker. It will open up all sorts of opportunities.”

The new unit covers 50,000 square feet and has been specifically re-fitted.

“Having more manufacturing space will allow us to further expand and bring some of the sub-contracting work back in-house that we’ve previously put out in the past,” explained Riggs general manager Nigel Matthews.

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“By doing this, it will allow us to create jobs and employ more people from the local area.

“As part of our continued growth strategy, we have plans in place to hire extra staff during 2013 including two machine shop apprentices, and are currently looking to add to our external sales team and in-house design department.”

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