Building material company takes on staff to run new South Shields branch after rival closes its doors

A new builders’ yard will launch with the help of workers who lost their jobs when a rival closed its gates.

Saturday, 29th August 2020, 5:28 pm

Dove Building Materials will open in Throckley Way on the Middlefields Industrial Estate, South Shields, on Tuesday, September 1, with the help of six workers previously employed by Travis Perkins.

Travis Perkins has said the closure of its branch in Western Approach, which led to 10 redundancies, was one of 165 it shut due to the economic outlook and after its business was hit by the coronavirus pandemic, with jobs offered at its other sites wherever possible.

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JT Dove is to open in South Shields with manager John Cullen, centre, in charge alongside department managers Jimmy Bell, left, and Michael Parry. Picture by Frank Reid.

Staff taken on by Dove will be joined by three others, with the team to rise to 15 during the next two years, including managers, sales consultants, HGV drivers and warehouse salespeople.

In addition to construction materials, it will offer supplies for roofing, landscaping, drylining, insulation, timber, plumbing and heating, with a bathroom showroom to open.

It will also offer brick matching, delivery and a kitchen and bathroom design service.

The company is returning to the town after relocating to North Shields in 2012 to a site which allowed its business to develop at that stage.

Travis Perkins has closed its branch in South Shields. Picture by Frank Reid.

Managing director Steve Robinson said: “We have been looking to move into South Shields for several years to help consolidate our coverage of Tyneside, but finding the right location and property was essential.

“Middlefields industrial Estate is ideally situated for us as its central, well known and the site was large enough to take our complete product offer.

“We hope to fully cover South Tyneside from Middlefields and offer our customers a service second to none.

"We believe there is a lot of growth and investment heading into South Shields over the future years to come and we will be ideally situated to service these requirements.”

The boss, who has taken on John Cullen as the manager among those who previously worked for Travis Perkins, added the firm runs as an employee benefit company, which means shares held on behalf of the workforce sees them get a share of any profits as part of their salary.

Its turnover last year was £65.4 million from 19 sites, making a profit of £2.93 million.

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