Advanced manufacturing

Rotork non-executive director and remuneration committee chair to leave group at end of this year

May 29, 2024
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Rotork non-executive director and remuneration committee chair to leave group at end of this year

Tim Cobbold, a non-executive director of Rotork, the Bath-based specialist manufacturing group, is to step down in December. Mr Cobbold was appointed to the board of the group, a world-leader in the design and manufacture of specialist valves for the oil and gas industry, in 2018.  He has since served as designated non-executive for workforce...

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From skills and transport to AI. Business West issues 10 priorities for next government to boost region

May 24, 2024
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From skills and transport to AI. Business West issues 10 priorities for next government to boost region

With the general election now taking place on 4 July, Business West – the region’s largest business organisation – has issued a 10-point plan for the long-term prosperity of the West of England. Through its Quarterly Economic Survey, which acts as a barometer of business sentiment across the region, coupled with its ongoing conversations...

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Record new first-half orders for Avon Protection as it also starts to reap rewards from restructuring

May 24, 2024
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Record new first-half orders for Avon Protection as it also starts to reap rewards from restructuring

A series of “significant” new contract wins in the first half of this year have lifted defence manufacturer Avon Protection’s order book to a record high. The 50% increase in the value of its orders combined with double-digit improvements in revenue and productivity combined to underpin a strong recovery for the Melksham-headquartered group.  Avon Protection,...

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‘World’s first’ polystyrene recycling process being developed by University of Bath academics

May 24, 2024
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‘World’s first’ polystyrene recycling process being developed by University of Bath academics

Chemical engineers at the University of Bath have modelled a new way of recycling polystyrene that could become the first viable way of making the hard-to-recycle packaging material reusable. The team, who are working with Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts, US, say their technique could be the first to make recycling polystyrene both economically...

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Project aiming to de-carbonise UK’s chemical industry taps into University of Bath’s expertise

May 16, 2024
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Project aiming to de-carbonise UK’s chemical industry taps into University of Bath’s expertise

Academics from the University of Bath are to help cut the chemical industry’s significant carbon emissions through the re-use of waste and by harnessing renewable electricity. They are teaming up with colleagues from five other UK universities, including Oxford and Cambridge, in the £13.75m government research project.  The Sustainable Chemicals and Materials Manufacturing Hub...

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Shaggy dog story gives guests at accountancy group’s annual dinner some food for thought

May 10, 2024
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Shaggy dog story gives guests at accountancy group’s annual dinner some food for thought

Ultra-athlete Dion Leonard, who runs distances of 250-plus miles in some of the world’s toughest conditions, has told West of England business leaders they too can overcome huge challenges – if they are determined. Dion, pictured, was guest speaker at accountancy body ICAEW West of England's annual dinner.  He entertained the audience with his life...

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Festival of Nature to host staff awaydays and roundtables as it seeks to involve Bath businesses

May 10, 2024
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Festival of Nature to host staff awaydays and roundtables as it seeks to involve Bath businesses

Bath firms are being urged to link up with the UK’s biggest nature festival taking place in the city next month, when they will be able to get involved in a host of activities. Among events targeted at businesses during the 21st annual Festival of Nature will be roundtables on biodiversity and creative industries, nature-focused...

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Alliance Pharma’s sudden change of CEO unsettles shareholders as it delays annual results for third time

May 10, 2024
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Alliance Pharma’s sudden change of CEO unsettles shareholders as it delays annual results for third time

Shares in international healthcare group Alliance Pharma slumped to a 12-year low after its chief executive spooked investors by announcing he is to step down from the business. Peter Butterfield, who joined the Chippenham-headquartered group in 2010 and has been CEO for the past six years, will leave on 30 June.    In a...

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MoD awards multi-million pound contract for chemical warfare masks to Avon Protection

May 9, 2024
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MoD awards multi-million pound contract for chemical warfare masks to Avon Protection

Defence manufacturer Avon Protection’s technological leadership in designing and making respirators against chemical attacks has landed it a contract worth up to £38m with the MoD. The group, which specialises in protective gear, masks and breathing equipment for the military and first-responder markets, will produce the equipment at its UK manufacturing plant near Melksham. ...

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Substantial increase in South West business optimism flagged up by third survey in less than two weeks

May 8, 2024
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Substantial increase in South West business optimism flagged up by third survey in less than two weeks

Another business survey has pointed to a dramatic bounce back in confidence among South West firms as the outlook on inflation and interest rates improves. Results of the quarterly survey by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) show optimism levels soared by 40 percentage points to their highest level since October 2021.  As a...

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