Boat builders power to success
the help of Business Link Devon and Cornwall, turnover has
increased three-fold in just two years at a Cornish boat building
Cockwells Modern and Classic Boatbuilding, of Ponsharden,
Falmouth, has also expanded to employ 11, including three
new boatbuilding apprentices.
Cockwells are renowned specialists in the bespoke construction
and restoration of wooden yachts, both power and sail. They
use time-honoured skills and craftsmanship in tandem with
modern techniques, to fulfil their customers' requirements.
Set up in Cornwall by Dave Cockwell in 2002, they were recently
supported by Business Link to attend both the London and Southampton
Boat Shows which resulted in several orders and on-going enquiries
along with excellent networking contacts.
Business Link personal business adviser Clare Whitney also
carried out a diagnostic review of the firm and referred in
a health and safety specialist.
"As a company committed to growth, producing a
high quality product, and developing our employees, we value
Business Link's help in supporting our aims,"
said business manager Jenny Cockwell, the founder's
Cockwells are currently building the new 60ft St Mawes passenger
ferry, a Bristol Channel pilot cutter replica and a 37ft classic
motor launch tender for a superyacht. As an example of skills
diversification, the company also recently constructed impressive
teak decking around a customer's private swimming pool
Unusually, the business has an in-house designer, Mash Derrick,
and its own sawmill. "From his knowledge and experience
of which timber makes the best boats, Dave sources trees while
they are still standing ensuring that only the best and most
durable materials are used," added Jenny.
"He prefers to choose sustainable woodlands in
Cornwall where oak is plentiful but travels to Scotland to
select larch. From design to completion of the boat, we control
the whole process at every stage."
Sustainability and the environment are key words in the company's
vocabulary. Cockwells are looking into planting trees in Cornwall
to meet the needs of future generations of boat builders and
is also investigating ways in which its waste products such
as sawdust and wood parts can be converted and re-used as
a renewable energy source.
"It can take 100 years to grow a quality tree and
we expect our newly built boats to last at least that long,
which we feel makes our business environmentally sound within
the industry," concluded Jenny.
Clare Whitney said: "As a rapidly expanding company
committed to environmental practices, Cockwells are an ideal
candidate to take advantage of support offered by Business
Link for growing businesses. As well as providing information
and advice on critical issues for day-to-day operations, Business
Link can prove vital in helping the business develop a clear
strategic plan to create competitive advantage and deliver
Adam Corney, executive director of Marine South West, added:
"I am very pleased that Business Link continues
to provide such great support to the marine industry in Cornwall.
It demonstrates the strength of the partnership between the
public sector support and marine companies in the region,
as shown by the new Marine Skills Centre in Falmouth where
Cockwells are receiving training."
For further information contact Carolyn Daw of The Marketing
PR Company on 01566 771863 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Objective One Programme for Cornwall and the
Isles of Scilly has invested Business Link Devon and Cornwall
through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and
the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF).
Business Link provides a free information and enquiry service
via an information gateway on the web www.bldc.co.uk
and via the telephone on 0845 600 9966 to all businesses and
those considering starting a business. Additionally, it provides
impartial business advice and support through a network of
partner organisations, which it co-ordinates, and a register
of independent business practitioners.
Business Link for Devon and Cornwall delivers the national
Business Link service to the region under contract from the
South West of England Regional Development Agency, which was
established by government in 1999 to promote the long-term
economic success of the region. It does this by working with
others to give people the skills they need, encourage enterprise,
improve infrastructure, help communities with regeneration
and promote the strengths of the region. Business Link has
received Objective One investment (European Regional Development
Fund and EAGGF) to help companies improve performance and
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
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Telephone: 01872 223439