Mayflower sails to growth with grant

LEP board member Chris Scholey and Mayflower Engineering managing director Kevan Bingham with a cupping pressit is making for Chesterfield Special Cylinders for use in the forging of cylinders.
LEP board member Chris Scholey and Mayflower Engineering managing director Kevan Bingham with a cupping pressit is making for Chesterfield Special Cylinders for use in the forging of cylinders.

An independent Sheffield engineering firm is set to recruit 11 staff and safeguard three jobs thanks to an £82,000 grant to modernise and expand.

Mayflower Engineering, which is fighting back after being hit by the recession, is celebrating after a successful bid to the Local Enterprise Partnership’s Regional Growth Fund, which is taxpayer funded.

The money will cover 20 per cent of the cost of two new pieces of equipment – a plasma and flame cutter for cutting through mild steel, and a press brake for bending pieces of steel or aluminium.

RGF rules state that for a grant up to £100,000 a firm is expected to create a minimum of five jobs. And a clear case has to be made - businesses have to prove their project would not go ahead either as quickly or at the same scale, without grant support.

Mayflower, based in Coleridge Road, Darnall, was established in 1974 and employs 72 staff who deal with the engineering business from design to installation.

Kevan Bingham, managing director, said: “Like many small, independent firms, we were hit hard by the recession and plans for growth have had to be adapted and rethought.

“Although the company is now well on the way to recovery, what we badly need is money to enable us to modernise and expand.

“This grant from the LEP will help us implement ideas that have been formulated this year and also, most importantly, enable us to save existing jobs and create new ones.”

The funding has come from the LEP’s “Unlocking Business Investment” programme, which has seen £32m allocated to the city region by Government.

Some £29m has been allocated, while £3m is available to small and medium-sized enterprises that plan to create sustainable, private sector employment in the region.

James Newman, LEP chairman, said: “The LEP bid for, and secured this funding on a competitive basis. Since then we have set about securing the maximum value for public money, and in doing so, supporting as many companies as possible to grow.”