300 year-old NI textile firm upgrades to new premises

One of the world’s oldest companies is set to move, increase turnover and create 10 jobs thanks to five-figure funding package from HSBC UK
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A historic textile manufacturer is set to begin construction on new premises in Upperlands, Londonderry, with the support of funding provided by HSBC UK.

Founded in 1736, William Clark & Sons is one of the world’s oldest companies and has utilised a five-figure funding package from HSBC UK to develop and relocate to a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility.

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Located two miles away from where the business started over 300 years ago, the new 40,000 square foot site in Upperlands will allow for improved efficiencies, increased production, and a better working environment for staff.

William Clark & Sons has utilised a five-figure funding package from HSBC UK to develop and relocate to a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facilityWilliam Clark & Sons has utilised a five-figure funding package from HSBC UK to develop and relocate to a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility
William Clark & Sons has utilised a five-figure funding package from HSBC UK to develop and relocate to a new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility

The new custom-built premise boasts state-of-art manufacturing facilities allowing both UK and EU businesses to fufil nearshorting textile printing, finishing, coating, and the return of 100% Irish linen production. The new site will ensure the UK production of high-quality textiles whilst driving a lower carbon footprint as opposed to alternative production based in Asia.

HSBC UK has helped support this investment to create new infrastructure and equipment to modernise William Clark & Sons. Alongside providing benefits for the business, the new facility will also bring environmental benefits to the existing site including the management of the surrounding riverbanks and woodland areas which will protect and improve ecological interests on site.

As a result of the HSBC UK funding, William Clark & Sons is anticipating the creation of up to 10 jobs at the Upperlands site and a 30% increase in turnover over the next 12 months.

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Kevin Devlin, managing director at William Clark & Sons, said: “This premises move and development secures the preservation of the original historic buildings, which will be repurposed as housing, whilst allowing William Clark & Sons to continue to thrive in a new custom-built space. We’ve always maintained the same values, goals and traditions as when we started production over 300 years ago and these are still very much at the heart of William Clark & Son’s philosophy and products. We want to thank HSBC UK for facilitating our next step into modernisation as our historic business continues to grow.”

Ben Clarke, corporate relationship director at HSBC UK, added: “We are delighted to be funding William Clark & Sons and support the business relocate its Irish manufacturing site. This move will create new infrastructure and introduce equipment to help modernise the traditional production of Irish linen for another 300 years. The funding allows the business to focus on enhancing their facilities whilst continuing to create high quality linen fabrics in their new custom-built space.”

Now owned by the Manchester-based The Evans Group of Companies, it still operates from Upperlands in Northern Ireland and manufactures Irish beetled linen with traditional processes. Work is expected to commence on the new William Clark & Sons site in 2022.