Independence Day on Tuesday was a special day in the history of Lynn family firm APS (Anglia Partitions Ltd).
It was the day the firm launched its new showroom and offices on Hardwick Industrial Estate and it invited Borough Mayor Carol Bower to perform the opening ceremony by cutting a ribbon. Other dignitaries, suppliers, business owners and friends also attended.
The newly revamped premises, based on Hansa Road, once served as a bathroom showroom and, before that, a car showroom. APS, whose services include glass partitions, mezzanine floors and suspended ceilings, refurbished the building from scratch, taking it from an empty shell to a working office, warehouse and showroom in less than seven months.
Project co-ordinator Alice Swadling, whose family own and run the company, said they had used the firm’s own team of fitters to do all the work. She said: “Our installation team carried out the project from start to finish. The result is the best advert possible for the work we do.”
Mrs Bower, who along with her husband Simon, had her own July 4 celebration – their 25th wedding anniversary – said she was really impressed with the refurbishment.
“It’s wonderful to have a family business represented on this estate,” she said. “You expect a modern office to be light, and you expect it to be airy. What you don’t expect are all the references dotted about nodding to all these different areas of East Anglia.”
Mrs Bower was referring to the town and city-scapes etched on the front of the glass office walls, representing areas where APS does business: Bury St Edmunds, Lynn, Peterborough, Ipswich, Great Yarmouth, Norwich and Cambridge.
The window frosted etchings were created and supplied by East Coast Signs. Jon Bocking, director of the Kings Lynn-based company said: “Glass walls have to have something on them to prevent people crashing into them. We did our research and we’re pleased with what we came up with. They are really eye-catching.
Around 50 people attended the lunch time opening, with a further 50 people attending the evening event. Managing director Ian Swadling welcomed the Mayor and guests, saying: “I’ve been in this business for 30 years and it’s the first time I’ve had a nice office – just before I retire!”
Mr Swadling also remarked on the fact that the they had stripped the building “right down to nothing and rebuilt it in just seven months.”
He thanked his three children who also work in the business: Amy, marketing manager; Richard, estimator; Alice, project co-ordinator, along with his wife, Helen, who is general manager.
The company also puts back into the community through two sporting sponsorships: Lee Hardy Racing, a professional superbike team based at Swaffham, and KES Community Tennis Centre at KES VII Academy in Kings Lynn. APS sponsored the junior teams, providing performance tops for matches and training.
Lee Hardy, fresh from the weekend’s British Superbike Championship at Snetterton, brought two of his superbikes along, as well as young rider Jake Dixon, who he has signed for the 2017 season.
“Mr Hardy said: “I met Ian back in 2015 and have this company’s sponsorship to thank for the clean modern unit we have to work in. They have given us a really nice level of support.
A host of other local businesses were represented at the launch, including King’s Lynn Website Design, Jordan Fitness, suppliers SIG Interiors and Mother Hubbard’s of Swaffham.
General manager Helen Swadling said: “We’re so impressed with the number of people here. People have taken time out of their day to come and wish us well, some from as far afield as Peterborough and Northampton. It’s really made our day.”
Food for the event was supplied by Heather of Good Taste Catering, West Winch. The celebration cake was made by Ann at Marham Cakeworld.
For more details about the company, visit the website at www.angliapartitions.co.uk call 01553 691 202 or email firstname.lastname@example.org