Polish bridge work lifts Sheffield rod specialist

A Sheffield steel rod manufacturer is on track for more work in Poland after supplying a new railway bridge with bespoke parts.

Thursday, 24th October 2019, 12:25 pm
Macalloy rods and connectors on the new railway bridge at Krakow. Photos by Marcin Ornat, BBR Polska.

Macalloy hopes to pick up contracts to supply two more bridges on the E30 railway line after the success of the first project.

The £300,000 deal kept the 68-strong company on Caxton Way, Dinnington, busy for three months designing the system, preparing bars and machining connectors, as well as sending samples away to the Railway Institute in Warsaw for testing.

The firm shipped more than 50 tension rods and connectors from Sheffield to BBR Polska, its partner in Poland. Together the two firms, which have worked together for 15 years, were able to offer the complete package of manufacturing and installation.

Katarzyna Paciorek, Macalloy area sales manager, said: “It’s nice to see my own country is having these projects. It’s even better when we as a company, and me personally, can be involved in it.”

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Managing director Peter Hoy said Poland was an important market for Macalloy, where 85 per cent of turnover is from exports to more than 40 countries.

He added: “It wasn’t a straightforward job and it’s gone pretty smoothly. But it’s important not to get complacent about these things.”

The firm hopes to hear by February if it has won further railway bridge work.

Macalloy has supplied parts for stadia, including the World Cup in Russia and Tottenham Hotspur’s new ground, as well as ice arenas, bridges and airports.

This year, it has supplied UK nuclear power plant project Hinkley Point C, Norway’s first velodrome, the Ken Rosewall tennis centre in Australia and is shipping parts to Dubai for Expo 2020.

Bosses expect work in the UK to pick up in the run up to the Christmas shutdown - especially since a Brexit deal appears to be close, providing business with some certainty, Mr Hoy said.

After a deal was signed it was likely rules would remain the same until a trade agreement had been agreed, he added.

Then, Macalloy would absorb any extra tariff costs rather than pass them on to customers by raising prices.

He added: “The risk is customers go to a local supplier. We have been around since 1948 and we have a strong brand. We are very much experts in our field and we do find we’ve got quite a good market for these niche products.”