Five celebrate a century

As Hurst Plastics rounds off its 20th year in business, five members of staff have marked 100 joint years of service between them.

Sharon Nixon, Steve West, Denise Lough, Phil Orr and Ian Farrow are all celebrating 20 years of working at Hurst.

Last year, 17 members of staff marked 20 years with the business, with many having formerly worked for panel manufacturer PDL before Hurst took over in December 1996.

The latest 20-year milestone means that 23 people have chalked up more than 500 years of service between them.

Mark Atkinson, sales director at Hurst Plastics, said: “Almost 20% of our workforce has served Hurst Plastics for 20 years or more. Not only is that an amazing amount of industry experience, it’s also testimony to us as an employer. With ambitious growth projections, the next five, 10 and even 20 years promise to be tremendously exciting.”

Finance manager Sharon Nixon joined PDL in 1996 and has been with Hurst Plastics since it was formed. Sharon trained to become a chartered accountant while at Hurst Plastics and is one of seven in the finance department.

She said: “There have been lots of changes since I joined the business 20 years ago. The industry is much more customer-focused nowadays and we all work hard to deliver extremely high levels of service. To keep pace, we have become far quicker operationally. Finance used to be labour intensive, but we now have some very sophisticated systems in place to speed up our processes. Hurst Plastics is a lovely, family business to work for.”

Panel production manager Steve West has also been with Hurst since its formation. Steve’s career has been dedicated to door panels for more than 20 years, during which time Hurst has manufactured nearly three million of them.

He said: “Manufacturing has changed a lot over two decades and the process of making panels is more streamlined now. From pressing the panels to cutting and reinforcing and handling them, everything is faster and more efficient. We’ve just taken on new business and next year will be an exciting one for us as we ramp up production of panels by around 40%.”