Beverley's 'Barcode Building' to be given new lease of life as business centre

By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 15 Feb 2018

An office block, which was built more than 30 years ago by a pioneer of barcode technology, is being given a new lease of life with conversion into a business centre.

Entrepreneur Tony Gartland has bought the building, which he first saw when he fitted the heating system for Kingstown Photocodes, later renamed as KTP.

Kingstown Photocodes was founded in 1977 and became the UK’s first manufacturer of barcode film masters. 

The company moved to the purpose-built Waltham House, next to the River Hull in Beverley, and built a strong reputation  

internationally before being sold to US-based Trenstar in 2001.

One of his first jobs will be to repaint the specially-designed, barcode-style staircase in eye-catching black and white.

Mr Gartland said: “The railings were designed to look like barcodes, but, at some point over the years, they’ve all been painted a drab, dark grey. We’ll take them back to barcode black and white.”

Mr Gartland was involved in fitting the heating system for Hull-based Neville Tucker and he remains a director of Neville Tucker Services Limited, which became independent in 2011. 

His aim with Waltham House is to take a building which he knows very well and turn the 22,000 square feet of space into a prestigious business centre.

He said: “The building has changed a lot since we fitted that first heating system and it enables us to offer a variety of business accommodation. They added a second office building and then a warehouse with offices.

“At the moment it’s about 80 per cent offices and 20 per cent warehousing. There are small and large office suites, call  

centre configurations, training rooms and presentation equipment, even phones and photocopiers. 

“There’s an examination room with a sign on the door requesting silence.

“There’s a canteen and several kitchens and much of the furniture is in very good condition.  

The conference room can probably  accommodate 100 people and there are 64 parking spaces with room to create more.

“I always liked Waltham House, from the first time I saw it, and I want it to be a really prestigious site.

“I want to spruce it up and turn it into a building where people really want to be rather than just another place to rent.”

Paul White, agency director at Garness Jones, explained that the building was bought by a training charity, Deflog VQ Trust, after KTP moved out. 

It was then gifted to East Riding College, which decided to sell because its needs were met by new facilities.

Mr White said: “There is a shortage of good office stock in Beverley, especially with this amount of parking. There is the potential to convert some of it into small industrial units, where there is also a lack of supply. 

“Tony is very flexible and wants to make it right for his tenants. There is nothing like this in the Beverley area – it has wonderful views across the fields and along the River Hull and it even has berthing rights.

“We already have businesses interested and we have had enquiries about gym use, offices and industrial.”

John Doris, vice-principal of finance and resources at East Riding College, said: “When Deflog VQ Trust wound up, it gifted us the building and the land, but we were unable to find a suitable use for it so we sold it and will use the proceeds to further invest in improving education for young people in the East Riding area.”

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