Hurst Green Plastics’ innovative approach to business has recently been rewarded with the prestigious ‘Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Innovation’; one of only two companies in the County to receive the award this year.
On behalf of the Queen, Lord Shuttleworth, the Lord-Lieutenant of Lancashire officially presented the Whalley based company with a cut glass rosebowl and commemorative scroll, signed by Her Majesty, at a ceremony held at BAE Systems Samlesbury – in the presence of the Mayor and Mayoress of the Ribble Valley, Councillor Ian Sayers and Mrs Jean Hayes together with Mr Michael Wright, Head of Eurofighter Typhoon Manufacturing, the Hurst Green Plastics Team and several key suppliers.
BAE Systems Samlesbury was the first location for the Hurst Green Plastics’ unique inventory management control system. Hurst Green Plastics Managing Director, Stephen Clarke, worked closely with engineers, and invented the unique TwinBin fastener storage dispenser. The TwinBin is a storage system which has two compartments; an “in-use” chamber and a “reserve” chamber, both separated by a slide. Once the “in-use” stock has been used by the engineers, the reserve batch becomes available and production can continue with no “stock-outs”. Time taken to perform stock checks and refilling the bins was also greatly improved. This “just-in-time” delivery allows manufacturers to refrain from overstocking bins, become more lean and thus considerably reduce their inventory and administration costs.
Michael Wright, Head of Typhoon Manufacturing said “It was a pleasure to be involved in the Hurst Green Plastics Queens Award presentation, especially as it was an order from BAE Systems that launched the TwinBin system. Since then the TwinBin system has been an integral part of our approach to managing component supply on the Typhoon programme at Samlesbury and is now successfully deployed across many other manufacturing facilities within our organisation.”
Since that break-through deal in 1999, the Company’s innovative dispensing system is now in operation in over 150 businesses across the globe, including the likes of Airbus, Boeing, Alstom and the NHS. The TwinBin product has also been further improved and developed, and can now incorporate Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) for remote and real-time inventory management.
The award, which is held for 5 years, is the highest award a company can receive in the UK and the Company, which provides dispensers for products ranging from milk and cereal to aircraft components, was only one of 50 across the whole of the UK to receive the Innovation award.
On receiving the award, Managing Director, Stephen Clarke, commented: “We are all absolutely delighted to have received this honour; it is an award that will lift the profile of our Company, not only in the UK but especially within the many countries we already supply around the world, and can only be viewed as a major commendation for our systems.”