29 May 2024, 12:10
By Furniture News May 16, 2016

Parker Knoll opens new facility

Last week, many of the country’s most influential furniture retailers gathered in Nottinghamshire to witness the opening of a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility for British upholstery brand, Parker Knoll.

Stephen McPartland, Member of Parliament for Stevenage, chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Furniture Group and liveryman of the Furniture Makers’ Company, cut the ribbon alongside chairman of Ashfield Council, councillor Glenys Christina Maxwell, to officially recognise the opening.

Parker Knoll has been crafting sofas and chairs since 1869, commanding a reputation for skilful craftsmanship and reassuring quality. Since a successful brand refresh in 2012, Parker Knoll has attracted a new and wider audience by reinvigorating its collections whilst maintaining its revered standards.

Due to the increase in demand, Parker Knoll outgrew its previous operation in Riddings, Derbyshire and looked for a nearby site in Nottinghamshire that would allow the brand to design and build a new facility to meet its exact specifications.

Parker Knoll Castlewood is an impressive 100,000 sq ft purpose-built premises combining a single-storey factory and two-storey office space. Thanks to investment in new machinery and an integrated computer system as well as improvements to the working environment and culture, Parker Knoll has successfully increased productivity in all areas of the business.

Stephen McPartland MP commented: “It is a great privilege to open this modern facility for Parker Knoll in Castlewood, which will quickly become the platform for another resurgence in British furniture manufacturing.

“Parker Knoll is 147 years old and one of the most recognised brands in the furniture world. Many people do not realise it was the first to advertise nationally, and today the 250 plus staff here are building on that amazing heritage.

“The future for the furniture industry is bright and Parker Knoll is leading the way.”

Other industry leaders have rallied to share their praise of the new facility.

Ben Burbidge, the newly installed Master of The Furniture Makers’ Company, says: “This specially commissioned factory is a fantastic accomplishment for Parker Knoll, a Corporate Member of The Furniture Makers’ Company, and we congratulate them for it.

“As the industry’s charity, we want a thriving British furnishing industry with a talented workforce that delivers high quality products, and Parker Knoll’s investment in the latest manufacturing technology and designated employee training space at its new facility exemplifies this belief.”

Jackie Bazeley, MD of the British Furniture Manufacturers, says: “Parker Knoll Castlewood is a fabulous facility. With a significant investment in its infrastructure, machinery and staff amenities, the opening demonstrates how important Parker Knoll is to Sofa Brands International’s portfolio.”

The opening was attended by Parker Knoll’s staff, including the brand’s skilled craftsmen and women, as well as independent retailers including Furniture Village and Arighi Bianchi. The day included tours of the new facility, informal lunch and official ribbon cutting.

Donna Bellingham, commercial director at Parker Knoll, commented: “We are grateful to Stephen McPartland MP for opening our new facility and thrilled so many of our retailers joined us to celebrate the event. The day allowed the team to demonstrate our commitment to developing our offering, exploring new manufacturing techniques whilst sustaining the handmade craftsmanship that Parker Knoll is celebrated for.”

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