Success stories

Case studies of some of the companies that East Riding of Yorkshire Council's Business Investment Services team has helped to start, support and grow.

Can I read about examples of business success stories?

Please read the numerous case studies and success stories below of companies located in the East Riding who have benefited from support from the council:

Carnaby Steel

Overview of company 

Carnaby Steel Structures are a structural steelwork sub-contractor, specialising in the design, supply and erection of steel framed buildings in both the private and public sectors.

The company consists of two full-time staff, one based in Bridlington, the other in a similar centre in Hartlepool on Teeside.

The company manages projects, sub-letting and fabrication and installation to specialist companies, mainly within the East Yorkshire and Teeside areas.

The company was established in 2005, with both directors working from home. Quickly we decided we needed external offices, and I moved into the business Centre during 2006.

Why did Carnaby Steel choose Bridlington Business Centre?

  • Good location 
  • Good parking 
  • Limited alternative accommodation in the area. 

What does Carnaby Steel like about the Bridlington Business Centre?

  • Admin services, which were particularly used earlier in the tenancy, are extremely helpful  
  • The mail service is excellent 
  • Employees enjoy the company, conversation and input of the helpful business centre staff. 

Would we recommend the centre?

I would not hesitate in recommending the business centre to others.

Alan Knights

What does the business do?

Writing, editorial and proof-reading services. Editors of Croda Way, the company magazine of Croda International plc.

How long have you been at Goole Business Centre?

Since 2009.

Why did you choose Goole Business Centre?

  • Previously a home-based business, but outgrew the home! I needed a small office with the necessary support/reception facilities, flexible access 24/7, and car parking 
  • Reasonable charges 
  • Conveniently located 
  • I wanted more interaction with people - something you don't get from working from home.  

What do you like about Goole Business Centre?

  • The centre has all the facilities I need at a reasonable, all-inclusive cost 
  • Conveniently located 
  • Conference room and car parking are important 
  • The excellent support team at centre - as a 'one-man-business' they have helped me a lot. Staff are always helpful and friendly 
  • I like the 24-hour availability and the fact that I can leave the office and 'switch off', which is difficult to do when working from home 
  • Nice spread of different businesses 
  • The overall friendly atmosphere.  

Is the business growing?

The magazine I edit is growing in line with Croda's global expansion into new countries and new markets. It has become a much bigger and more professional publication in recent years and is distributed worldwide to every Croda employee.

Would you recommend the centre?

Most definitely.

Jos. Richardson & Son

Overview of company 

Jos. Richardson & Son Ltd has been trading for 125 years. Based in Goole, the company was started by Joseph Richardson in 1892 as coal merchants. The last forty years has seen the company move away from coal into car dealerships, petrol filling stations and convenience stores. The company now operates five petrol filling stations and convenience stores in East and North Yorkshire, as well as the flagship Glews Services at J36, Goole.

History/overview of support from the team

Our relationship with the Inward Investment team goes back many years. We have always found them extremely proactive and willing to engage in commercial development. They have always been very supportive of our plans, whether it be for a small-scale planning application or the major truck stop scheme at Goole, that was developed out in 2017. We first made contact with the team in 2006 regarding our desire to build a truck stop at Glews Garage, J36, M62 Goole. 

We already had an existing petrol filling station on site, but the scheme would allow us to cater for more HGVs and allow further food retail development on site. Despite very good support from the Inward Investment team and the ERYC in general, the sticking point was always the need for a new roundabout at the exit. The Inward Investment team, along with their colleagues in transport worked very closely with us over a number of years, in exploring a variety of funding options for the roundabout. After a couple of false starts, we applied for the DfT ‘Pinch Point’ Grant. Inward investment and transport teams prepared an excellent submission and the scheme was granted funds in March 2013.  


In the late summer of 2014 the roundabout was completed, and at the same time planning permission was obtained by the company. Work on the truckstop started in late 2015, with it opening in October 2016. The final stage of the development was completed in February 2017 with the redevelopment of the petrol filling station.


The site is performing very well, and we wouldn’t have got to where we are without the invaluable support of the Inward Investment team.

Press Association

Overview of company 

Based in Howden, East Yorkshire, Press Association (PA) is the national news agency for the UK and Ireland, and a leading cross-platform content provider. As well as being the home of the UK’s national newswire, PA supplies words, images, video, graphics, live data, social media content, editorial services, and more, to a broad range of media outlets, digital brands, businesses and public sector organisations in the UK and overseas.

History/overview of support from the team 

In May 2003, the Press Association (PA) opened the final phase of its £5m investment in the centre of Howden. The 36,000 square foot purpose built office complex houses around 450 staff and forms the focus of the PA’s operations nationwide.

As the national news agency for the UK and Ireland, the Press Association is at the heart of the media industry, supplying a continuous stream of words and pictures into the newsrooms of newspapers, broadcasters and digital publishers. Howden is now home to PA’s data, listings, sport, editorial production, IT, finance and HR functions.

Making an investment of this scale in the centre of a historic market town protected by a conservation area, made this a very challenging project which the Inward Investment team supported through every stage. This approach is reflective of the team’s key account management ethos which emphasises the importance of long-term relationships. In this instance, it involved a complex site selection exercise which involved the demolition of a former Police Station/Magistrates Court to allow the construction of the purpose-built office which was hand-guided through the planning process. The team were then involved with the staff recruitment and helped the company forge links with local schools and colleges to ensure young people from the area have the best chance of benefiting from having an international media business on their doorsteps.

Gareth Bramall, Head of Data Services at PA explains why the company chose Howden as the location for expansion: “Our choice of Howden was based on solid research and the fact that PA already had a thriving business in the town. PA’s listings department employed more than 100 people and we had been struck by the efficiency and loyalty of our local employees. Those values have been illustrated time again as our presence has grown. We offer top quality jobs at the cutting edge of the media industry; we have had no problem recruiting the right people to fill those positions.

“Howden's location beside the M62 was also a factor, together with the positive support, advice and encouragement we received from the East Riding of Yorkshire Council.” 

The Press Association continues to play an important role in the local economy to this day and the multiplier effect of investments of this scale is evident in the current vitality of the Howden town centre retail and service offer.

Rofin Sinar UK

Overview of company

As part of the world-wide Rofin group of companies, Rofin-Sinar UK Ltd was established to design, develop and manufacture sealed carbon dioxide lasers for marking applications and industrial processing, and are based in offices at the Bridgehead Business Park, Hessle.  

The company's sealed lasers and power supply components are installed in a wide variety of systems around the world, spanning a diverse range of industrial sectors and across a broad spectrum of cutting, welding, drilling, heat treating and marking applications

History/overview of support from the team

Rofin Sinar UK Ltd was established in 1998 with 11 people as a start-up to develop and extend the laser product range of Rofin Inc (located in Hamburg Germany) to include sealed carbon dioxide (CO2) lasers below 1000W. 

Today, RSUK manufactures a wide range of sealed carbon dioxide laser sources at power levels from 100W to 1000W for a variety of industries including automotive, aerospace, packing, electronics and in a number of applications involving cutting, drilling, welding, marking of plastics, metal, fabrics and ceramics.  

The company has a turnover of £30 million, exports 98% of its laser products to over 50 countries around the world, and provides high-value employment for 165 people. 

Originally located in Willerby, after 18 years we moved to a new, purpose-built, 80,000 sq. ft. factory on the Bridgehead Business Park near the Humber Bridge in February 2016.


The East Riding inward investment team were instrumental in helping us identify and access local grants that secured the original inward investment from our German parent company. As the business has grown they have continued to maintain an interest in our success facilitating the original contacts with the developers of the business park we now operate from and also with the local LEP resulting in a £1.4 million hybrid grant supporting the new premises and an exciting Research & Development project to develop novel lasers to expand our future market coverage. 

Christine's Sewing Service - case study

Overview of company

When the company that Christine Taylor worked for closed down, she decided to approach the council's business services team to see how they could help her. Christine was helped to develop a business plan and was enrolled in a range of workshops. She also received day-to-day support from enterprise coach Darren Roberts.


Christine said: "I had worked for Johnson's Dry Cleaners for 15 years when it closed I was faced with the choice of finding another job or opening my own business. I went to the East Riding Business Centre in Beverley and got some information about how to start my own business. The advice and guidance I received have been essential to me setting up my sewing business."

Christine's Sewing Service has now been trading for two years and is located within the Beverley town centre. The business has gone from strength to strength, now employing 3 additional members of staff and offering clothing repairs and alterations, dry cleaning and laundry services.

Knitting by Post - case study

Overview of company 

Knitting by Post is a toy knitting pattern business, set up in December 2012 by Vicky Gordon.  Vicky had been trading from home for 2 years when she realised she needed help and would struggle to carry on alone.  She contacted the council's business investment services team and met with a business adviser.


Vicky said: "I have received regular and consistent mentoring from Chris Moore (business adviser), who has an extensive knowledge of how a business should run.  He understood the difficulties in balancing a home life with running a growing business.  

With this help, I have been able to get the basics right, such as financial and business planning.  This has helped me to work out a realistic way forward and set achievable goals.  I have been able to identify what makes a small business solid with good foundations, such as looking after cash flow, identifying seasonal trends and being able to plan for them." 

Vicky also attended broadband workshops run by the council, to develop her online presence.  She launched a new website in January 2016 and saw sales improve immediately as she was able to employ up-selling and cross-selling skills discussed in the workshops. 

The business has also acquired a small office, become a limited company and has taken on its first employee.  Vicky said: "These are all big steps and I would have struggled to have made them on my own without the help of the council's business team."

Knitting by Post has a growing portfolio of 150 knitting patterns, to which new patterns are added weekly.  It plans on becoming the market leader for toy knitting patterns within three years.  Currently, they sell on a small scale to local yarn shops around the country and this will be a big area for development for the business in the coming years.

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