HRH Prince Andrew, Duke of York visits Claytons facility.

Clayton Equipment Ltd the UK’s premier narrow gauge Locomotive builder based in Burton on Trent, Staffordshire can point to numerous milestones in its 81 years of successful trading.

The Company exports the majority of its products and has delivered equipment to clients in over 60 countries on five continents globally.

The 4th October 2012 saw another milestone for the Company as His Royal Highness, Prince Andrew, Duke of York visited the facility.

This high profile visit was also attended by the Counties Civic Dignitaries the Vice Lord-Lieutenant and his wife, the Mayor and Mayoress of East Staffordshire Borough Council together with the Chief Executive of East Staffordshire Borough Council.

The visit commenced with a short briefing about the Company to His Royal Highness by Managing Director Steve Gretton ahead of the factory tour. In the meantime Civic Dignitaries embarked on a separate tour of the facility led by Matthew Pearson, Business Development Manager.

His Royal Highness then started his tour in the Engineering Department where Chief Engineer Clive Hannaford presented projects currently in progress.  Moving on Prince Andrew was then introduced to David Smith Manufacturing Manager where manufacturing planning was described before progressing out onto the factory floor.

His Royal Highness was shown the various sub-assembly build areas feeding the final assembly and test section of the facility. He showed great interest in the manufacturing processes paying particular attention to the electrical control and motor build departments.

Having observed a finished locomotive on static test His Royal Highness was then shown a machine being put through its paces dynamically on the test track.  The factory tour concluded in the stores and distribution department before moving on to a marquee erected in the grounds of the facility.

Once in the marquee His Royal Highness met with Administrative Staff and long serving employees before embarking on a relaxed informal discussion with the rest of Clayton Equipment workforce; during which afternoon tea and cakes were served.

The event drew to a close with a formal speech by Managing Director Steve Gretton; His Royal Highness then responded before unveiling a commemorative plaque to mark the day.  His Royal Highness remarked on a real sense of family feel within the business; commenting that the network and connectivity in what the Company did was very evident.  He congratulated Clayton Equipment Ltd on being part of the diversity of globally leading UK companies who had adapted to the changing economic climate delivering prosperity in GDP terms from contracts won in markets all over the world.

Managing Director Steve Gretton remarked; “The key to our continued success lies within the professionalism of our people, the quality of our products and our total commitment to customer satisfaction and after sales service.  These factors together with market led product design innovations ensures our business stays at the forefront of the industry making our machines the most specified worldwide.  However ultimately it will be the successful combination of our technically advanced, highly reliable, safe products built to exacting standards in the most efficient cost effective manner that will elevate Clayton Equipment Ltd above our global competitors.”

Clayton Equipment Ltd consider it a great privilege and honour to have  received His Royal Highness at their facility in Burton on Trent and were appreciative and inspired by the kind and encouraging comments made by His Royal Highness.  The memories of the day will live long in the minds of the employees and be committed to the annals of the company history.

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