WE Amies, reported to be the oldest plastics manufacturing company in Great Britain, is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year.
Founded in 1929, the Sheffield-based company started out as a compression moulding company, using phenolic resins which included Bakelite.
The company has operated under founder Bill Amies’ name since the business was started.
As part of the celebrations, the company has gifted itself two new Arburg 320 C 500 – 170 Golden Edition models. The 50-tonne injection moulding machines combine new Arburg thermolifts for conveying and drying plastic granulate.
Managing director Bob Ball, said: “There are companies today manufacturing plastic components what were incorporated pre-1929, but they have evolved from metal bashers and printers, whereas Amies has only ever made plastic parts.”
Phenolic resin was the only thermosetting plastic material available in the late 1920s. The material was used to produce handles and knobs using for kitchen items, together with electrical products including telephones. Other products included dominos and ashtrays.
The Shepley family has been involved with Amies since the business was started. Three generations of the family are represented by current chairman Chris Shepley.
Bob Ball added: “The business plans to stay in the niche, ‘added value/engineering’ field, but with an emphasis of continuing to develop and expand our medical offer. We also wish to stay privately-owned within the Shepley family.”
In addition to medical moulding, Amies is continuing to grow its business with recent work in the automotive and plumbing sectors.