Luxury holiday home business honoured at Yorkshire Awards
Willerby Ltd's Kirsten Bolton (second from left) and Sue Allan (second from right) receive the firm's award from Karen Wilzcek and host Harry Gration
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 20 Oct 2017
A Hull business which went from making beehives to being the market leader in luxury holiday homes has been honoured at the Yorkshire Awards.
Hull-based Willerby Ltd is a major player in the luxury static caravans market and its contribution to the county’s business life was recognised as it was presented with the Yorkshire Business Enterprise Award at a glitzy awards ceremony in Leeds on Friday, October 13.
Chief executive, Peter Munk, said: “We are delighted to have received the Yorkshire Business Enterprise award, and see this as recognition of the hard work and determination shown by all of our staff throughout 2017.”
The company was founded in 1946 when Willerby resident Walter Allen decided instead of making homes for bees, he would build touring caravans for the growing holiday park industry.
The business now employs more than 1,000 staff and makes 7,000 homes and lodges a year.
With a turnover of £147m, it currently has more than a third of the share of the UK market and exports across Europe, South Korea, China and New Zealand.
Mr Munk said the firm's focus is to increase its direct engagement with its customers.
The company opened its first dedicated showground in Scotland last year and a second showground was opened in Hull on Monday earlier this week.
He said: "The showground enabled our customers to immerse themselves in the Willerby brand and experience our models first hand, and following its immense success we look forward to opening our second showground in Hull this October.
“Currently we’re on a journey from good, to great, to best and it is absolutely fantastic to get the recognition that we’re on the right track.”
The company focuses on traditional skills and has a successful apprenticeship scheme with 24 people employed at the firm's Hedon Road base this year.
Karen Wilczek from Aon Risk Solutions, who sponsored the award, and was a member of the awards committee said: “Willerby continues to be a significant success story for great British manufacturing, residing in East Yorkshire and producing outstanding quality holiday homes with stunning and innovative designs.”