Saint-Gobain Glass to invest £30m in Yorkshire site

Saint-Gobain Glass is investing £30m in its glass manufacturing factory in Eggborough, East Yorkshire.

The project represents the largest industrial investment in the UK by the Saint-Gobain Group since the Eggborough plant was built in 2000

The firm will carry out a major construction programme to completely rebuild and install a new state-of the-art, float glass furnace, as well as upgrade other areas of the factory.

The project represents the largest industrial investment in the UK by the Saint-Gobain Group since the Eggborough plant was built in 2000.

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Saint-Gobain Glass said the investment will secure the long term supply of consistently high-quality, high-performance glass for the window and door market and wider construction sector in the UK.

Due to be completed by the late summer, the installation of the enlarged capacity furnace will replace the existing furnace that has reached the end of its design life.

The firm said the new furnace will use less energy and will help it to optimise manufacturing efficiency, increase production capacity, and enhance Saint-Gobain’s market-leading environmental and sustainability credentials.

Steve Severs, managing director at Saint-Gobain Glass, said: “This is a major milestone in the history of our business.

“It demonstrates our commitment to the long term future of glass manufacturing in the UK and our confidence in the wider construction industry. The new facility is designed to manufacture high-performance products developed in the UK to meet the specific needs of the UK window industry.”

Mr Severs said the project has been in development and planning for several years to ensure continuity of supply for customers throughout the construction process.

“This has involved a high level of stock build-up in advance and imports of glass from our Saint-Gobain sister plants in Europe which will help to fulfil orders throughout the process,” he added.

“I am grateful for everyone’s support and commitment and look forward to the official opening later in the year.”

Saint-Gobain has a long history of glass making, stretching back over 350 years.

Mr Severs said: “We are very experienced in delivering these complex high value engineering projects, supported by highly skilled in-house technical and engineering teams.

“And of course, strict measures are being deployed to ensure the works are delivered in a Covid-19 compliant way.”

The existing furnace has manufactured a “ribbon of glass” long enough to stretch the length of the UK from Lands End to John O’Groats more than 130 times.

Site preparation works have been underway at Eggborough for several months, creating a contractor village to make the site ready to receive the components and specialist equipment.

The project requires 250 contractor personnel from 30 companies from the UK and across Europe who will work to dismantle the existing furnace and build and commission the new one.

The components for the new furnace are already on site and include more than 7,000 tonnes of specialist ‘refractories’: the building blocks used in the construction of the furnace. Many of these refractories are manufactured by Saint-Gobain’s own manufacturing business.