UK’s last wheelbarrow maker doubles production to meet soaring demand

 Read time: 5 mins      Added: Date: 08-07-2019

Share:   LinkedIn     Twitter     Facebook     Share via email     Copy link to clipboardLink copied to clipboard

The UK's only wheelbarrow manufacturer, The Walsall Wheelbarrow Company, has more than doubled its capacity and is set to hit £10 million turnover after securing a £450,000 funding package from Lloyds Bank.

The Walsall Wheelbarrow Company was founded by the Thacker family from their garden shed in the 1940s.

Today it is the last remaining wheelbarrow manufacturer in the UK, supplying customers across the construction, agriculture and retail sectors.

Recently it has seen an increase in orders from retail customers including Amazon, Homebase and Screwfix, thanks to a growing number of Brits taking up gardening.

Capitalising on growing demand

In order to expand capacity to capitalise on the growing demand, the family firm used a £450,000 hire purchase facility from Lloyds Bank to invest in a new powder painting machinery to spray paint its products without impacting day to day cashflow.

The new machinery has helped increase capacity by 133 per cent, meaning the business can now produce 3,500 wheelbarrows a day, compared with 1,500 previously.

Turnover is set to grow from £8.4 million to £10million.

"The hire purchase facility has enabled us to invest in top-of-the-range machinery that will increase our efficiency without having a negative impact on our working capital."

Jonathan Thacker, owner, The Walsall Wheelbarrow Company

Walsall Wheelbarrow

Jonathan added: "The new machine uses around 40 per cent less energy than the previous one, so we're saving on electricity and gas while reducing our carbon footprint.

"Lloyds Bank has been by our side throughout the entire investment and has taken the time to understand what we want for our business."

The business has seen particular success with its Barrow-in-a-Box product, a ready-to-assemble wheelbarrow that comes in a small, portable box, which was designed in response to demand from the retail sector.

"A continued focus on innovation and new product development has kept The Walsall Wheelbarrow Company at the forefront of the industry."

Phil Davies, relationship director, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking

Innovation and expansion

Phil Davies added: "Its expanded capacity will enable it to continue to succeed in a nation of avid gardeners.

"Helping local, family-run businesses to expand and maximise on demand is a big part of our commitment to helping Britain prosper."

The news comes after Lloyds Bank announced it would be lending up to £2.5billion to West Midlands businesses in 2019.

All lending is subject to status.

Important legal information

The products and services outlined on this site may be offered by legal entities from across Lloyds Banking Group, including Lloyds Bank plc and Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets plc. Lloyds Bank plc and Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets plc are separate legal entities within the Lloyds Banking Group.

Calls may be monitored or recorded in case we need to check we have carried out your instructions correctly and to help improve our quality of service. Please note that any data sent via e-mail is not secure and may be read by others.

Lloyds Bank is a trading name of Lloyds Bank plc, Bank of Scotland plc and Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets plc. Lloyds Bank plc. Registered Office: 25 Gresham Street, London EC2V 7HN. Registered in England and Wales no.2065. Bank of Scotland plc. Registered Office: The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ. Registered in Scotland no. SC327000. Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets plc. Registered office 25 Gresham Street, London EC2V 7HN. Registered in England and Wales no. 10399850. Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under registration number 119278, 169628 and 763256 respectively.

Eligible deposits with us are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). We are covered by the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). Please note that due to FSCS and FOS eligibility criteria not all business customers will be covered.

Lloyds Banking Group includes companies using brands including Lloyds Bank, Halifax and Bank of Scotland and their associated companies. More information on Lloyds Banking Group can be found at

While all reasonable care has been taken to ensure that the information provided is correct, no liability is accepted by Lloyds Bank for any loss or damage caused to any person relying on any statement or omission. This is for information only and should not be relied upon as offering advice for any set of circumstances. Specific advice should always be sought in each instance.