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Knaresborough company celebrates increased orders 1-year on from devastating fire

A North Yorkshire manufacturer is celebrating increased order books exactly one year on from a major fire that could have closed the factory and forced the lay-off of its 50-strong workforce.

It was at the end of January last year when fire broke out at Craven & Co in Manse Lane, Knaresborough. The company makes shelving, storage and handling equipment for the catering, medical and commercial sectors and the fire started in the area that puts plastic coating on to metal shelving.

The workforce was evacuated while the blaze was tackled by tenders from Harrogate, Ripon and Knaresborough.


The blaze caused hundreds of thousands of pounds of damage and part of the factory was closed for over a month, but it was business as usual so far as fulfilling orders and maintaining supplies was concerned.

MD Angus Milnes said: We set about working our documented disaster recovery plan and liaising with suppliers and customers.

Four weeks after the fire, we started initial production trials and one week after that went back to full production.

In fact, orders have increased since then in growth from existing clients and from new clients, which National Sales Manager Neil Fox puts down to the fact that they were quick and honest in letting people know what had happened.

MD Angus Milnes added: I believe customers appreciated our honesty and openness. We want to say thanks to our customers and staff for their support and loyalty which have made Craven & Co even stronger than before the fire.

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