Pioneering roof tile manufacturer Russell Roof Tiles (RRT) has announced £18.5m investment in expansion, doubling output at its Burton site.
The company is a leading independent concrete roof tile manufacturer supplying products for top housebuilders and high-profile social housing and commercial projects. The company produces thousands of concrete roof tiles and accessories tiles every week used on roofs across the country.
The expansion will help Russell Roof Tiles meet increasing demand for its products to meet the UK’s housing needs of 300k new homes every year.
The project is a multi-national co-ordination of supply partners from Sweden, Denmark, Germany and British suppliers and is funded by the business. The expansion will ultimately create approx. 25-30 skilled and semi-skilled jobs in engineering and maintenance.
Ground works have already started on preparations for the new factory and line. Construction will start towards the end of 2023 with the new facilities completed, and product output starting from mid July 2024. The current site will continue to manufacture whilst the major project takes place.
This is the largest single investment since the firm was acquired (from Cemex) in 2011 by Crown Global Equity, which manufactures concrete roof tiles in the US and Mexico. Since then, the UK company has seen £17.3m invested in its three sites, continuing to increase efficiencies and capacity to meet demand.
The firm employs 150 over three sites, two in Burton and one in Lochmaben (Scotland) and the company is already the leading independent supplier of concrete derivatives for the UK pitched roofing market.
The Nicolson Way site in Burton was first opened in 1990 and now covers 9-acres. This new investment will deliver more manufacturing lines and a new 1600 sq m building which will house a state-of-the-art curing chamber (only the second of its type in the country) for the concrete tiles.
The new facility, a QUADRIX® from Kraft Curing Systems GmbH, accelerates the curing process through the controlled addition of heat and humidity. This guarantees a continually uniform environment for curing, with high air volumes at a low flow rate. Not only does this new system improve quality of the concrete roof tiles it is the most sustainable curing method available globally, aligning with Russell Roof Tiles’ commitment to sustainability.
In January last year, the company announced its mission to reach net zero by 2040 and has already been investing in sustainability for over 10 years. The company has a CHP unit (generating its own heat and power) and has reduced its environmental impact already by investing significantly in policies and adopting new technologies as part of its sustainability commitment to reducing its carbon footprint.
It has worked hard to source materials locally and was the first British roof tile manufacturer to have achieved an “Excellent” rating for responsible supplier sourcing. RRT is signed up to the SME Climate Hub, which is a government initiative aimed at getting SME businesses in the UK on the path to Net Zero. It has also achieved gold status with the Supply Chain Sustainability School, which is a multi-award-winning initiative that represents a common approach to addressing sustainability within supply chains.
Over the past two years Russell Roof Tiles has also invested £3.25m at its 11-acre Scottish plant, highlighting its ongoing dedication to offering housebuilders and developers high-quality products and UPVC accessories.
This latest investment is part of Russell Roof Tiles’ ongoing capital improvement plan to further enhance quality across the business, by utilising the latest innovations in manufacturing.
Andrew Hayward, Managing Director at Russell Roof Tiles said: “This is a major milestone for Russell Roof Tiles, marking the biggest ever single investment for our business. It is the culmination of 18 months of planning and will increase manufacturing efficiencies, using the latest innovations to reduce our environmental impact.”
Andrew added: “The latest project is an important part of our long-term growth as well as our sustainability strategy, using the best-in-class equipment to ensure we’re manufacturing products of the highest quality in the most efficient way.”
To mark the announcement, Kate Kniveton Member of Parliament (MP) for Burton and Uttoxeter visited the Burton site with the firm’s Managing Director Andrew Hayward.
Commenting, Kate Kniveton MP said: “It was great to be with Andrew and the team at Russell Roof Tiles in Burton. Russell Roof Tiles is a company which has made real progress over recent years, expanding and employing more and more people locally.
“This new investment Russel Roof Tiles is making into their Burton site is fantastic news for our town and the wider economy, bringing more jobs and prospects to our area.
“I want to congratulate Andrew on the success Russell Roof Tiles is having which is enabling it to make this business investment but also for the investment they have already made in Burton, raising thousands of pounds for local charities – this is greatly appreciated, and I know what a big difference they have made.”