Briggs helps Marston’s to future-proof its operations
11 April, 2019 by Kathryn Hyde
Briggs is a long-standing partner of Marston’s; supporting its materials handling need for many years. Particularly working with Marston’s through a number of periods of significant growth, helping to increase efficiencies and cost savings on site whilst future-proofing operations.
Briggs’ recent involvement in the preparation of their new site in Thurrock stemmed from a project previously completed in their Mansfield Distribution Centre.
Service Excellence in the South
Following the acquisition of both the Charles Wells Brewing and Beer business and various supply contracts, Marston’s wanted to bring the distribution operation in-house. However, due to their current facility in London not having the capacity to service the enhanced operation, the decision was made to relocate to a larger space in West Thurrock. The new site meant Marston’s could provide exceptionally fast turnaround, offering next day delivery as opposed to two days which is the industry standard.
A Blank Canvas in Thurrock
The tactics used at the Mansfield site were replicated at the new site at Logistics City, West Thurrock where 20 pieces of equipment supplied by Briggs have recently been delivered, including: Aisle-Masters, Yale counterbalance trucks, Hako cleaning equipment, and Low Level Order Pickers. However, Briggs didn’t just supply the materials handling fleet, they also supported Marston’s with racking, charging stations, column protectors and a pallet wrapper.
Both Briggs and Marston’s have a strong safety culture, which meant this was kept front of mind when specifying the new equipment. Additional features, such as Pedestrian Awareness Lighting and steel mesh panels to the front and tops of the counterbalance trucks, were incorporated to protect drivers and pedestrians from the risk of falling containers.
The site began as a blank canvas and when fully operational will employ over 100 people. As a result, Briggs are continuing to deliver specialist safety training to all new employees.
Growth at Mansfield Distribution Centre
Marston’s purchased Mansfield Brewery in 1999 and in 2002 made the decision to move their Wines and Spirits pick operation to the new distribution centre, creating one central pick operation and one stock location.
As demand continued to grow, an additional extension was built onto the warehouse which enabled Briggs to take a fresh look at how to maximise the space for Marston’s. The solution was to incorporate tighter spaced racking and use Aisle-Master product instead of traditional reach trucks. This meant the extension could create an additional 1,000 pallet spaces for the Mansfield operation.
Due to the success delivered by the new extension, Marston’s now has plans to tighten up the racking space in the original part of the warehouse and introduce Aisle-Masters into that space to prepare the site for further growth.
Kevin O’Rourke, Group Fleet Manager for Marston’s explained: “We’ve actually had a very close partnership with Briggs for a number of years and so we made contact with our account manager who did the site visit with us, so that they could assess the space and provide recommendations for the new fleet.
“Due to Briggs’ extensive experience in the industry, they are always able to suggest solutions that I would never have thought of. We have really tapped into their expertise to help manage the fleet and we have had the opportunity to trial various technologies across a number of our sites and see what fits for our unique operation.
“The Aisle-Masters has not only maximised the space we have, but it has saved us quite a lot of money by having a multi-functional piece of equipment instead of separate pieces of equipment for each job.
“We wanted to make sure that we got the best out of this warehouse and Briggs helped us to deliver on that objective.”