Health & Safety Support Rubber Stamps Business Expansion

Published on Business stage: Scaling, Starting, Thinking, Unlocking

Fully funded Health & Safety support from the Chamber has helped a St Helens business remain fully compliant following an expansion into new premises.

Formed in 2014, The Mini Restoration Company, restores classic Mini cars. Stripping them down to a bare shell, and restoring them to an even better condition than when they first ran of the British Leyland production line in the 1960’s and 70’s

The company originally traded from a unit in Rainford. The need for larger premises to cope with the growing order book, led to a move to Sutton. With no let-up in the orders, the company has now taken an additional neighbouring unit to give it even more capacity.

The growth highlighted the need to ensure that the company’s Health and Safety policies and processes were fully compliant with latest legislation. St Helens Chamber Business Growth Programme provides 12 hours fully funded support, and this was utilised to provide expert health and safety consultancy.

Company proprietor Jason Hartley says:

“I was fairly sure that everything was as it should be, but with the additional floor space, extra vehicles and people in the workshop I thought it would be wise to get everything rubber stamped. The consultant was excellent, really knowledgeable, and while ensuring everything was right, he also understood the needs and operations of a busy workshop. When he finished he provided us with a detailed report, prioritising any actions we needed to take. It’s always good to get the all clear from an expert.”

Jason is a self-confessed classic Mini fanatic. He restored his first Mini at the age of 14 and classic car restoration has been a large part of his life ever since, albeit for the most part as a hobby.

Following redundancy after 30 years as a coach builder, he started to give serious consideration to pursuing his long held dream of turning his Mini restoration hobby into his livelihood. With help from the Chamber, the dream became a reality.

Jason says:

“I started the business with the help of the Chamber, and I had a dedicated business mentor to guide me. It’s all just ballooned from there, and I’ve never looked back.” He continued, “We’re the only company in the country that does what we do, and the work has just kept coming in.”

With customers dotted around the globe, even as far away as Australia, what started as a hobby business, has developed an almost cult following amongst classic Mini enthusiasts worldwide.

“Our customers are classic Mini fanatics,” says Jason, “Whether they are re-living their youth, or even having a Mini midlife crisis. Whether they are younger people who just love the old Mini’s. What they all have in common is that they want to own a Mini that is has been meticulously restored to all its former glory.”

The company’s success is driven by Jason’s passion for the cars, and his subsequent determination to ensure that every project exceeds his customers’ expectations. He explains:

“There is no compromise when we re-build a car. We only use panels manufactured by British Motor Heritage, and using modern finishing techniques, the final finish is the best you can get”

With its Health and Safety foundation firmly in place and a full order book for the next 2 years the future certainly looks bright for the Mini Restoration Company. To find out more about what the company does visit its website

The Business Growth Programme is funded by ERDF and St. Helens Council. It provides 12 hours fully funded support for businesses based in St Helens. For further details visit our website St Helens Chamber Business Growth Programme, or contact John Woods 01744 742058 john.woods@sthelenschamber.com

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