Fire-torn bottle maker secures new warehouse

A glass bottle manufacturer whose distribution warehouse was devastated in a huge fire last year is investing £2.5m in new premises.

Allied Glass's new distribution warehouse and bottle decoration plant at Wakefield Europort

Allied Glass Containers’ warehouse and bottle decoration plant in Cross Green Way, Leeds, went up in flames last October, destroying 10,000 pallets of glass.

Now the firm, which makes bottles for a number of whisky, gin and rum brands, has signed a 10-year lease on the recently refurbished 190,000 sq ft Wakefield Eurohub building at Wakefield Europort.

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The company, which is paying £4.25 per sq ft, also has two bottle manufacturing plants in Leeds and Knottingley and another distribution hub near Leeds.

Managing director Alan Henderson said: “Allied Glass are delighted to be moving into the new premises at Wakefield Europort.

He added: “Whilst the events that have led to us moving across to the new building have given us a lot of work to do, we are really excited about the new facility which is in a great location for both of our manufacturing sites.

“The premises offer us the ability to rebuild our decoration department which prints glass produced by us for delivery as far away as Australia for filling.”

The new site will be manned by around 40 people, a mix of warehouse staff and glass decoration staff.

The decoration side will start operating at the end of February. By spring time, Mr Henderson said he expects the site to be fully up to speed and operating new automatic machinery.

According to the latest accounts filed at Companies House, Allied Glass posted a turnover of £94.3m and a pre-tax profit of £7m in the year to December 5, 2015.

Last year it won an industry award for its limited edition bottle for Highland Park Ice Edition whisky.

The company joins a number of well-known names at Wakefield Europort, including DHL, Argos, Asda, Kuehne & Nagel, Warburtons, Royal Mail, 3663 and One Stop.

Iain McPhail, partner with Knight Frank’s industrial property team in Leeds, said: “These high-profile names underline how the Wakefield area is attracting high-quality national occupiers.”

Rebecca Schofield, Knight Frank partner who marketed the warehouse on behalf of owner Parabola, added: “This is one of the most significant industrial property deals in Yorkshire during the past 12 months.

“Wakefield Eurohub was the only warehouse of this size available to lease in West Yorkshire and it is a wonderful opportunity for Allied Glass.”

The outlook for the industrial property market in Yorkshire for 2017 is bright, according to the national property agent, which has offices in Leeds and Sheffield.

Ms Schofield said: “The key themes to take from the industrial sector in the region at the beginning of 2017 are that we are seeing speculative development of small-to-medium sized units making a much needed return to the market and we are starting to see continued rental growth and confidence within the market, which augurs well for the future.

“Throughout the industrial market, construction costs have acted as a brake on smaller speculative development over recent years.”

She added: “Occupier demand remains strong amid the shortage of units and we have seen grant and local authority support assist with delivering much-needed stock to the market.”