Made in Britain brings together metals sector innovators for panel debate at UK Metals Expo on 14th September at Birmingham NEC

Made in Britain Logo

Made in Britain is organising and hosting a panel debate at this year’s UK Metals Expo, which is being held at Birmingham’s NEC on 14th September 2022.

The trade association brings together close to 2,000 British manufacturing businesses, including a number of metal manufacturing, processing and recycling firms located throughout the country.

The UK Metals Expo promises to bring the entire metals industry together under one roof with representatives from all links in the supply chain, from primary metal manufacturing to surface coatings and recycling. The panel, entitled ‘Metal Matters: UK Manufacturers Driving Growth through Innovation’, will be moderated by Made in Britain CEO John Pearce, and the speakers are drawn from Made in Britain member companies:

Our ‘Metal Matters’ Made in Britain panellists at the UK Metals Expo are all great examples of how pervasive and diverse the metals business is in the UK. Manufacturers working with metals are crucial in enabling other industry sectors – quite literally shaping the built environment. I am delighted to be moderating this panel with a group of speakers from member companies representing design skill, creativity and innovation from across the industry,” said Made in Britain CEO John Pearce.

The businesses represented on the Made in Britain panel are a microcosm of the breadth of the UK metals sector as a whole. WDS Components makes machine parts and accessories, supporting equipment manufacturers and engineers all over the world; Furnitubes shapes the environment we live in with its street furniture and other metal structures; and Beaver Bridges provide a full-service pedestrian and vehicle bridge making service, from inception to construction.

Lord Redesdale, Chair of UK Metals Expo, said:

The partnership between UK Metals Expo and Made in Britain is a match made in heaven. Metals are the backbone of the UK manufacturing industry and also play a critical role in the Green Industrial Revolution. Collaboration matters too and we are thrilled to see UK manufacturers passionately engaging with the metals sector to drive innovation while forging a sustainable future together. Raw materials and skills shortage, price inflation, energy crisis, Covid recovery and post-Brexit trade have created an imperfect storm. UK Metals Expo could not come at a better time and our collaboration with Made in Britain could not be more relevant.”

The metals sector in the UK employs around 230,000 people at more than 11,000 companies, directly contributing £10.7 billion to UK GDP. As it feeds into other sectors, the industry further underpins around £200 billion of GDP, supporting another 750,000 people.

Geo-political change and globalisation have caused a decline in world market share for the UK in the last 40 years, with even domestic demand increasingly serviced by imports. However, the government has committed to re-establishing UK supply chains and developing infrastructure. Additionally, there are ambitious plans to develop world-leading cars and aircraft, and upgrade energy and transport infrastructure. This will create increased demand for metals, which UK companies are well-placed to fill.

Catherine Barratt, Managing Director of Furnitubes, said:

Steel is the largest material component in our outdoor furniture products and it’s critical to helping provide the long lifetime expectancies of our products. We are fortunate that 90 percent of our steel consumption is recycled steel and is 100 percent recyclable. Minimising the carbon footprint of our products is our priority over the next few years, so we are looking forward to innovation in the steel industry to recycle more steel and use renewable energy to recycle and process it.”

Mark Moody, Sales and Marketing Director at WDS Components Ltd, said:

Metal plays a significant part in our R&D; quality, supply, and price are all important factors we must consider, not just at inception but for the continued planned growth of our ranges. This year, WDS has purchased three new turning machines with a view to bringing more production in house to counter global supply issues affecting our business.”

Henry Beaver, Managing Director at Beaver Bridges, said:

Our bridges are at the forefront of heavy steel fabrication and bespoke structures. The demand, skill, approach, innovation and thought processes that goes into building the biggest, strongest and the best is right at the heart of the UK metals right now – the future has never been brighter!”

Made in Britain’s ‘Metal Matters: UK Manufacturers Driving Growth through Innovation’ panel debate will be held at 11am on 14th September at the UK Metals Expo at Birmingham NEC

Free visitor registration for UK Metals Expo: here

Panel Discussion at UK Metals Expo 2022

Metal Matters: UK Manufacturers Driving Growth through Innovation

Wednesday 14th September 2022
11:00  –  11:50 | FREE to attend, register now

Theatre :  Technology, Innovation and R&D

Catherine Barratt, Managing Director at FurnitubesCatherine BarrattManaging Director
Henry BeaverHenry BeaverManaging Director
Beaver Bridges
John Pearce, CEO at Made in BritainJohn PearceChief Executive Officer
Made in Britain
Mark Moody, Sales and Marketing Director at WDS Components LtdMark MoodySales and Marketing Director
WDS Components Ltd


Made in Britain brings together the British manufacturing community, united with the use of the official protected mark, helping members to sell more at home and across the world. The Made in Britain mark certifies members as trusted businesses that have met stringent criteria set to guarantee they are truly British manufacturers. Members receive ongoing support across sales, marketing, export and PR, and also feature in a searchable directory used by consumers and procurement professionals to source British-made products.

WDS Components is a leading European manufacturer and global distributor of components, standard parts and machine accessories. Their customers are original equipment manufacturers, maintenance engineers, small businesses and individuals. WDS has been a member of Made in Britain since 2014.

Furnitubes designs and manufactures street furniture. Working in partnership with landscape architects, local authorities and contractors, they work hard to make sure their products meet the needs of the communities and organisations they serve. Constantly innovating and updating their range, one of Furnitubes’ latest additions is a movable or static hand sanitiser dispenser for workplaces and shops. Furnitubes joined Made in Britain in 2019.

Beaver Bridges design and make turnkey bridges for pedestrians and vehicles. Involved in every step of bridge manufacture, they provide a complete service including survey, design, manufacture, delivery and installation. Clients include government, construction giants, forestry companies and private landowners. Beaver Bridges is a newer member of Made in Britain, joining early in 2022.

Made in Britain Press Contacts

Julie Thompson Dredge 07889123145
Sarah Chappell 07375 363914

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