Staffordshire factory move set to double workforce and create 50 new jobs

A South Staffordshire company is looking to create 50 new jobs as part of plans to move to a larger base.

The site earmarked for the new Prime Oak Factory at Heath Mill Road, Wombourne. Photo: Google Street View
The site earmarked for the new Prime Oak Factory at Heath Mill Road, Wombourne. Photo: Google Street View

Prime Oak, which makes timber structures such as conservatories and orangeries, has been running for more than 20 years.

It is now planning to expand by moving from its current base at Whitehouse Lane, Swindon, to a new headquarters at Heath Mill Road, Wombourne.

South Staffordshire Council’s planning committee backed the move at its October meeting when it approved two applications for the firm.

Existing buildings at the Whitehouse Lane site are set to be demolished and nine new homes are earmarked for the land, while a new factory will be built at Heath Mill Road alongside offices, storage facilities, parking and service areas.

The meeting was told the move would enable the company to double its workforce, creating 50 new jobs.

A report to the planning committee said the house sales in Swindon will help fund the construction of the new purpose built premises in Wombourne.

It added: “Prime Oak’s current business headquarters is located within the Green Belt adjacent to Highgate Common. Their current site is home to the manufacturing processes which take place within former agricultural buildings; offices and support facilities within additional purpose-built Prime Oak timber buildings; and a large area of external storage.

“This is (an) isolated and somewhat constrained site, with access routes along the surrounding highway not especially ideal for larger delivery vehicles. On site staff and visitor parking are very much at a premium.

“The company, due to their continued success story, has now outgrown their current site and with their aspirations in terms of further growth, and the associated additional jobs that this will generate, they have identified the vacant site of the former Sage Aluminium Products Ltd on Heath Mill Road as their favoured location for new purpose built premises.

Mindful

“The site has been purchased and is now owned by Prime Oak Ltd, thereby demonstrating the company’s intention to reinvest in the district.”

The new housing development planned for the Whitehouse Lane site will include gardens and parking areas. A mix of detached and semi-detached properties is proposed, ranging from two to five bedrooms, and all for sale on the open market.

The planning committee report said: “It is noteworthy that each proposed property includes a home office which are shown in addition to the bedrooms indicated. In most, but not all, cases these offices do appear to be of a size such that, depending upon the future occupiers’ preferences, they could be utilised as an additional bedroom or other habitable rooms, e.g. games room; TV room; guest room.

“That said, and being particularly mindful of the current restrictions many are experiencing in terms of office working, moving forwards and with increasing numbers of people adjusting to working from home it is possible that more new homes will start to include home office accommodation, if not as standard then certainly as an option.

“In all cases these home offices are located at ground floor level which offers a degree of flexibility and potential ‘future proofing’, providing an opportunity for lifetime homes and/or accommodation for a dependant relative should the need arise.

“The layout and design of the proposed development is such that it takes its influences from a traditional farmstead, complete with one of the proposed new dwellings taking the appearance of “the farmhouse”. The remaining properties take their design influences from traditional farm buildings, with a mixture of single storey, one and half storey and two storey buildings, in a mixture of redbrick and timber cladding.”

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