Find out more about PHS Teacrate from the inside!
David Wicks, MD of Teacrate, will be sharing his thoughts, ideas and even his feelings on this blog, so that you can keep in touch with what's happening at Teacrate and across the industry.
Archived posts can be found using the links to the right of this page.
Contact us with your comments!
Wednesday 23rd May
As many involved in the Removals & Storage industry would be aware, the Annual BAR Conference took place last weekend in Royal Windsor. All the feedback is very positive, so hats off to the organisers.
Congratulations to Sheffield based Specialised Movers who were awarded Commercial Mover of the Year 2012. The standards being achieved in commercial moving continue to excel and this award showcases the very best. Teacrate is a long term supporter of the CMOTY through its official sponsorship, and we are delighted to join with the rest of the industry to celebrate this year's success.
Wednesday 16th May
This week we launched a brand new website for our online crate rental business, Rentacrate. The site primarily services the needs of business users and supports them with their ad hoc facilities management requirements, such as relocations or internal reorganisations.
The new website offers an enhanced crate calculator tool which helps businesses quickly assess the quantity and types of crates required for their project. Like Teacrate, Rentacrate operates nationwide through a network of eight service centres, so the next day delivery of crates is standard. If customers prefer, they can collect their crates from their nearest Rentacrate service centre and all this can be arranged online at the point of ordering. At the same time as ordering crates, Rentacrate customers can also arrange handling equipment rental and purchase any additional packing accessories that they may require, such as bubble wrap and sticky labels.
Rentacrate continues to offer crate rental services directly to home movers as well, and through the website domestic customers can access a range of competitively priced crate deals for 1, 2, 3 and 4 bed homes.
Browse the new Rentacrate website here.
Monday 30th April
Welcome to our new-look website. We have refreshed the design a little, added a bit more content and hopefully improved the navigation! Our ultimate aim is to give our website visitors a better user experience, so if you have any feedback - good or bad - about our new site, please do contact us!
Wednesday 18th April
In March the demand for housing in the UK hit its highest level for two years as first time buyers tested the market in advance of the end of the Stamp Duty holiday. More properties came onto the market during March, and according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), new buyer enquiries edged up to levels not seen since 2010.
Despite the gentle increase in activity across the market in early 2012, it remains to be seen whether this trend will continue against the backdrop of the recent budget and the ongoing economic situation. The Stamp Duty holiday ended last month after being introduced in 2010. The Government believes that the scheme has not helped people get onto the property ladder as it had intended. The Stamp Duty holiday had exempted first time buyers from the 1% Stamp Duty on homes worth between £125,000 and £250,000, enabling these buyers to save up to £2,500 on their house purchase.
Thursday 5th April
Look out for our new and updated product catalogue with refreshed front cover design. All our obsolete products have been removed and new ranges added, such as the newly branded range of cartons (which many of our customers will have seen). We also provide more options within our bubble wrap range and supply extra detail on the features and benefits of these products, which are all from the market leading 'Sealed Air' brand.
New food sector products include the multi-purpose plastic pallet - an entry level product and more competitively priced than our existing plastic hygiene pallet. We also introduce the 'chick tray' which is popular in the small fruit growing industry as well as two variants on a cake tray which sits nicely within our existing range of bread and patisserie trays.
Download a copy of Teacrate's new product catalogue here.
Thursday 22nd March
The CBI has given a generally favourable response to the Chancellor's budget speech this week.
Although the Budget has been accused in many circles of giving with one hand and taking with the other regarding family budgets, for business and the economy the outlook looks reasonable. The Chancellor has made moves to ensure that our corporate tax system is more internationally competitive and there are incentives for companies to invest, do business and create jobs in the UK.
For small businesses things may not seem very different on the ground. A lot of work is still needed to find new alternatives to bank lending so that this vitally important sector of the economy can grow and create jobs.
Wednesday 14th March
With only a few months left to go before the London Olympics, rental activity in the city is hotting up. International demand for short term property lets in London is expected to be very strong over the weeks to come. Zoopla.co.uk, the property website is gauging this demand and has reported a 161% increase in search activity over the past four weeks around the term 'Olympics'.
Some city dwellers are looking to escape the capital during the games and are offering their homes up for rental as a way to cash in. Most hotels are already fully booked, so the rentals search trend is likely to intensify. There are a wide range of properties on the market, with wide ranging price tags to match. A one bed flat within walking distance of the Olympic Stadium is up for £200 per week, but a six bed house in Notting Hill will cost £30,000 per week.
Monday 5th March
Many people believe (on strong evidence) that the food and drink industry and particularly food manufacturing has a key driving role in Britain's economic recovery.
Food & Drink manufacturing is a core element of manufacturing in the UK, representing over 15% of manufacturing turnover and employment. It is also the most resilient of the UK's manufacturing industries, having shown the greatest success at maintaining its stability throughout the recession. The UK's food export market is also performing very well showing strong and growing demand for UK products abroad.
Being involved in the UK food industry as we are at Teacrate, gives us a feel for the sheer size and scope of the sector. We not only deal with the big business food processors and manufacturers, but also with the small family businesses and primary producers such as the farmers, the growers and pickers. We also support the retail end, with major contracts on RTP supply with a leading UK multiple and we have a range of relationships with wholesalers and distributors. We're getting to grips with the industry's many dimensions and we can clearly see its potential as a driving force in the UK's economic future.
Wednesday 22nd February
Teacrate will be exhibiting at the Foodex Show (Birmingham NEC, 25-27th March 2012), so if you're making plans to attend or exhibit, please drop by and see us on Stand E259.
This year we'll be showcasing our most popular food sector product, the bale arm crate (FC4), but more importantly, we'll be communicating our expertise in container pool management and all the services that this can entail such as crate washing, meeting seasonal or ad hoc demands, crate 'buy back' or part exchange schemes and lease purchase options.
The Foodex show brings together all those involved in the UK food processing, packaging and logistics sectors, so we are hopeful that the event will be a key opportunity for us to promote our products, services and brand across this wide platform of industry players.
Monday 6th February
Will there be a recovery in house prices in 2012? Not quite according to Halifax - but it may not be all bad. Halifax is predicting little change to house prices throughout 2012. Perhaps we can look forward to a period of stability? Average house prices at the moment are little more than their 2010 levels and are not expected to shift much over the remainder of 2012. This forecast of house price stability from Halifax comes at a time when most leading economists are predicting that the UK will again move into recession in the early part of 2012.
The Halifax's relatively bright outlook takes account of the mismatch in supply and demand for new homes keeping prices broadly stable and the expectation that the Bank of England will maintain the base rate at 0.5% for the whole of 2012 which will support the housing market.
Thursday 26th January
On behalf of all of us at Teacrate, best wishes to Paul Bullock, Teacrate's well liked Key Account Manager who has recently suffered a stroke. Paul is currently recovering at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford following a successful operation and is expected to make a full recovery. His friends and colleages at Teacrate are missing his cheery ways and we all wish him a speedy recovery.
Monday 16th January
It seems that Christmas period trading on the high street wasn't as bad as most people were expecting. According to the British Retail Consortium, UK retail sales in December were 2.2% higher than the same time last year. The bad weather that hit us last year though was sure to have kept many people from the shops.
The multiple retailers have seen mixed fortunes, for example, Sainsbury's have reported 'excellent' financial results against Tesco's disappointing ones.
We have certainly seen a busy Christmas period at Teacrate, especially on the food side. During the six week run up to Christmas, Teacrate's crate wash plant in the West Midlands washed over two million trays, and staff based there loaded/unloaded in excess of 400 articulated vehicles filled with food crates and trays.
Wednesday 21st December
On behalf of all the team here at Teacrate, I wish our customers, suppliers associates and friends a very Merry Christmas.
I'd like to thank everyone involved with Teacrate for their support and my particular thanks go to Teacrate employees for their exceptional hard work throughout the year.
Its been a mixed kind of a year. We've been faced with a number of challenges, but at the same time managed to secure some key successes. Our continued growth into the food RTP sector for example, has been very positive and we expect this success story to continue into 2012 and beyond. On a personal front, having lost my Dad earlier this year, its been a difficult time, but I am looking forward to rounding the year off with a holiday in Austraila and Thailand.
May 2012 be a happy, healthy and prosperous year for us all!
Thursday 15th December
You may have read in our news updates
about Teacrate's activities at the Movers and Storers Show and our charitable efforts for Movember (the men's cancer charity). Paul Bullock and Dave Ewart held their nerve and had their moustaches shaved off for the charity. Well done both.
With a professional barber on our stand at the Show charitable donations were being made in return for a traditional wet shave, and this combined with Paul and Dave's exploits helped us raise in excess of £350 for the charity. Not a bad effort all round!
If you haven't already heard about our Xmas Special Offer, it would be worth taking a look at. Hire SK3 skates at 49p per week when ordering LC3 crates.
Monday 12th December
We're fully into the Christmas season now, and things are pretty busy at Teacrate. Getting festive ranges of food and other products onto shelves at this time of year is always a major focus for many of our customers and for our operational teams as well.
We're going to be involved in putting a hot Christmas dinner on the table for London's homeless again this year, with our crate donations to Crisis Christmas, the homeless charity. The best of luck to all the volunteers involved in this massive effort on the run up to Christmas.
Wednesday 7th December
Channel 4 has launched a special season of property programmes this week fronted by some of it's best known presenters. Instead of a focus on home improvements and makeovers this series will be investigating the reasons behind the housing crisis and possible solutions to it. Its being called 'The Great British Property Scandal'.
The week long series kicked off on Monday with Jon Snow reporting on the plight of homeless people being sent by councils to private landlords ('landlords from hell'). These unscrupulous landlords provide completely sub-standard properties to vulnerable families while making a fortune from public money. This is followed by an investigation into the scandal of empty homes by Restoration Man presenter George Clarke.
The Great British Property Scandal looks at why there are one million empty homes when two million families are on council waiting lists. Clarke will be lobbying the government and local councils to support him in a campaign to reduce the number of long-term empty properties and show the public how they can get involved and make a real difference in their communities. Phil Spencer of Location, Location, Location investigates how easy it can be for things to go wrong for people who lose their job or become ill and then lose their homes. Its rounded off by Kevin McCloud who reveals what happened when he set out on his very own Grand Design - a five year project to create attractive, affordable and environmentally friendly social housing.
Thursday 22nd September
We're doing quite a bit of work behind the scenes this autumn and winter preparing for exhibitions. First up we have the Movers and Storers show in November at the Telford International Arena. Find out more about this year's show here: www.themoversandstorersshow.co.uk. We're quite excited about it, as we will have an interesting attraction on our stand with a charity tie up which I'm sure will turn out to be really good fun. Further details to be announced nearer the time! In March next year we will again be exhibiting at the Foodex show, the Uk's largest show for the food and beverage supply chain. We have been working on some new product and service ideas and hope to have these ready for formal launch at this event.
Tuesday 6th September
According to Rightmove, Uptown Court, a Surrey based 24 bedroomed mansion is the UK's most expensive property. The 50,000 square foot property in Windlesham has been on the market for £70 million since 2005, and a buyer has yet to be found. Not surprisingly, theresidence costs a fortune to run and many are arguing that the best thing would be to knock it down - because nobody wants to buy it. It is rumoured that the Irish goverment, which has effectively owned Uptown Court since the collapse of the bank that funded its construction, is spending £60,000 a month for the estate's upkeep. Uptown Court is the height of extravagance with its five swimming pools (including a rooftop infinity pool with views over the Surrey countryside and an indoor pool accessed via a glass lift). It has a heated driveway, two-lane underground bowling alley and a total of 103 rooms. In addition to the enormous main building, the property comprises 11 acres of garden and 46 acres of woodland.
Wednesday 27th July
A homes search company has claimed that a competitive property market has emerged along the West and South Wales coasts as a result of an influx of foreign investment. Wealthy buyers from Russia, Eastern Europe, China and the Middle East are showing inceasing interest in the South and West Wales coastal region's traditional properties for the first time, with Tenby in Pembrokeshire proving paticularly popular. Here properties have been snapped up for their asking price prior to them reaching the open market.
The area's recent rise to fame in blockbuster movies including Harry Potter and Ridley Scott's Robin Hood has seen a number of buyers from across the globe being won over by the stunning scenery here and seeking their own part of Welsh heritage, driven also by the depressed price of sterling.
Wednesday 13th July
See if you can spot our crates on TV. They'll be making a guest appearance on Channel 4's 'Help My House is Falling Down' with Sarah Beeny, Thursday 21st July at 8pm. We've supplied crates to the home owners so that they can pack up and store their belongings off site before the builders start work on their property.
Wednesday 6th July
Teacrate has been getting involved with more charity work recently - this time with the sixth annual Mens 10K in Glasgow. This popular event, organised by registered charity, the Men's Health Forum Scotland, is one of their main vehicles for raising the profile of men's health and wellbeing in Scotland. The event took place on Fathers day (June 19th) at Bellahouston Park. Teacrate donated 200 rental crates from our nearby Livingston depot for use in pre and post event logistics.
Wednesday 25th May
Are you superstitious? If you're not, you could stand to gain, with number 13 houses being worth an average of £3,924 less than neighbouring properties according to a survey by property website Zoopla. The average value of a house in the UK with the number 13 is £205,085 compared to an average of £209,009 for the surrounding 11, 12, 14 and 15 numbers, the survey claims. Numbers 1 and 2 are the most valuable addresses because these typically occupy corner or end-of-terrace locations, and house prices gradually decrease as the address number increases. Zoopla also found that more than a quarter (28%) of streets in the UK don't have a number 13 address, and some local councils, including Lewes district council and Herefordshire county council, have banned the use of number 13 in new housing developments. But while new streets can be built without a number 13, changing or removing it from an existing property is against the law.
Wednesday 18th May
Last weekend’s BAR Conference was a very successful event, with informative business sessions, top speakers and a great social programme. Congratulations on behalf of all at Teacrate to Delivery Services of Belfast on being awarded the CMOTY, an outstanding performance from a very worthy winner. Teacrate’s Paul Bullock took great pleasure in presenting Richard Hill of Delivery Services with the trophy, and as official sponsors we are delighted to be providing Delivery Services with their prize of £1,000 of Teacrate goods and services. The viewing of the FA Cup was very well attended and I trust that all those participating had an enjoyable afternoon, even if the result wasn’t quite to your liking!
Thursday 12th May
If you're heading to the BAR Annual Conference in Manchester this weekend make sure you catch up with Teacrate. Paul Bullock and Dave Ewart will be on hand to offer advice and help you with any enquiries. We are, of course, keen to find out who the overall winner of the CMOTY award will be. Its been a fantastic competition so far, with Delivery Services Belfast, Pickfords and Reloc8 all in the running. The winner will be announced at the Gala Dinner on Saturday evening, so good luck to all finalists. Teacrate are sponsoring the showing of the FA Cup final on Saturday afternoon, so anybody interested in watching the game can join us to see it on the big screen with complimentary drinks. Heres to a great conference!
Monday 9th May
Economists have measured the effects that the building of a new stadium has on house prices. The constuction of a new stadium is not often a source of joy for those living nearby, but they are wrong to think that it will cut the value of their homes.
Economists from the LSE and CASS business school looked at house prices around Arsenal's Emirates Stadium and Wembley. Their findings showed that property prices within 5km of the stadiums rose by as much as 15%.
Thursday 21st April
"Cardboard boxes used to be free, so what happened?". This article on the BBC website earlier this week looks at the emergence and growth of the online market in cardboard boxes. The key trends that have given rise to this are that waste legislation requires supermarkets and other retailers to crush and recycle their waste cardboard, so its harder for the public to get hold of boxes this way. Secondly, homemovers like the convenience of having their choice of boxes and other packaging materials delivered directly to their homes.
In contrast to supermarket boxes, the boxes sold by packaging retailers are 'fit for purpose', more robust and generally of a higher quality. Teacrate supplies a range of double walled cardboard boxes in various sizes for moving house and other essentials like bubble wrap, packing tape and packing paper. Our products are available to the removals trade as well as to the public via our buy-on-line website teacratepackaging.co.uk. If you have domestic moving clients and you don't supply packaging to them directly, contact us now to find out how you can gain by referring them to our website.
Wednesday 13th April
The commercial real estate market is showing 'modest improvement' according to the latest (Q4, 2010) RICS Commercial Property Market Survey, but with some regional and sector differences. Prime London offices are, and continue to be, the most buoyant part of the market, says the RICS Chief Economist, but oversupply will affect secondary offices around the country.
Thursday 7th April
The removals and storage industry uses tons of it, we sell stacks of it, and it has a multitude of uses in the packaging industry in general. Bubble Wrap, this fantastic packing material has certainly stood the test of time, but have you ever wondered how it came about in the first place? The story begins in 1957, across the Atlantic in a garage in New Jersey with two engineers, Marc Chavannes and Al Fielding. They were trying to make plastic wallpaper with a paper backing. Surprisingly, this product didn’t take off. They realised, however, that their invention could be used as a cushioning packaging material. At that time, only abrasive paper products were used for packaging, which were not suitable for cushioning heavy or delicate items. Marc and Al raised $9,000 to fund a developmental production line. They incorporated Sealed Air Corporation in 1960, and today, Sealed Air is a leading worldwide manufacturer of numerous protective and specialty packaging materials with annual revenues exceeding 3 billion dollars.
Monday 4th April
What has your your experience with estate agents been like? Well, Consumer group Which? has criticised estate agents over the large discrepancies in fees and valuations. Although they said that agents had begun to improve in recent years, there were still issues with some agents over-valuing properties in order to win instructions, Estate Agent Today reports. Which? invited 48 agents to value homes around the country between November and January. "We could have paid between £5,481 (independent) and £13,703 (Connells) for someone to sell the same house. We also discovered that valuations could vary by tens of thousands of pounds for the same property," the report stated. "And while valuations are an art, not a science, some of them were too far out, which would inevitably make it harder to sell your home."
Furthermore, one Essex property was valued at £650,000 by one estate agent and £500,000 by another, suggesting there are still some agents out there hiking values just to land a contract.Commenting on the findings, property ombudsman Christopher Hamer said sellers should shop around for a good deal and ask agents to justify their fees.
Wednesday 23rd March
Today's spring budget has seen the revision of UK 2011 growth forcasts downwards from 2.1% to 1.7%, as inflation remains high and the economy contracted at the end of last year. Therefore, George Osborne's 'budget for growth' to get the economy moving again, hasbeen defined in the context of an overall lower growth potential.The good news for everyone is that crippling fuel duty rises have been scrapped. But any giveaways are counter-balanced by tax revenue generating measures, such as a crackdown on tax avoidance. For the property market, £250m has been pledged to help 10,000 first time buyers purchase new-build flats and houses across England. First time buyers would bear 5% of the cost, supplemented by 10% respectively from the government and the home-builders. It is hoped that this measure will also provide a boost to the construction industry.
A series of measures have been announced aimed at boosting enterprise, including a further cut to corporation tax. Plans to set up Enterprise Zones in the most deprived areas of England (with an increase from 10 to 21 zones), relaxed planning laws, and discounted business rates are all intended to stimulate job creation and business growth.
Wednesday 16th March
FindAProperty.com released research yesterday revealing that Torquay has a higher proportion of properties for sale than any other town in England and Wales. In the seaside town, 1 in 17 homes is currently on the market. Truro in Cornwall and Swansea in Wales follow closely with 1 in 18 and 1 in 19 properties for sale respectively. The Cheshire town of Chester is the most difficult place for buyers, as only 1 in 71 properties is on the market. Regionally speaking, London leads the way, with 1 in 23 properties for sale, while the North West lags behind with 1 in every 41 homes on the market.
Wednesday 2nd March
Like many businesses, Teacrate keeps its finger on the pulse of customer satisfaction through feedback received via our daily interaction with customers. The PHS Group, Teacrate’s parent, with its proactive stance on service quality and development has been running regular customer surveys to get structured and comparable feedback from customers across its diverse business divisions. Recently, Teacrate customers were included in the survey programme for the first time and this initial snapshot has produced some positive results for Teacrate, for example:
- 98% of customers are satisfied overall with the provision, delivery and collection of crates
- 95% of customers are likely to remain with Teacrate for their services, with 91% likely to recommend Teacrate to others
These results obviously reflect the quality of Teacrate’s staff, whose experience and dedication is second to none.
Wednesday 23rd February
Britain's housing minister has announced the final design of a new government scheme which will boost housing provision in communities across the UK. The 'New Homes Bonus' it is hoped, will give local authorities an incentive to increase the supply of homes. Starting in April, the scheme is intended to be a reward system encouraging councils to provide more new homes by match funding the additional council tax raised for new homes and properties brought back into use for the next six years. Housing Minister, Grant Shapps has commented, "These radical reforms demonstrate our commitment to seeing a major upswing in housing to meet Britain's housing need and seeing more homes that people want in the places that they want them".
Thursday 17th February
The Business Moves Group has recently signed a 3-year exclusive crate supply deal with Teacrate. These sorts of successes demonstrate the confidence that our customers have in our market leading service. Teacrate customers can expect first class local support from our experienced teams at each of our 8 service centres as well as co-ordinated national or regional support from the broader Teacrate infrastructure.
Wednesday 9th February
The finalists have been announced recently for the forthcoming CMOTY awards. Many congratulations to Delivery Services of Belfast, Pickfords Business Solutions and Reloc8. The next stage of the competition starts next week with client visits and member BS8522 inspections. The overall winner will be announced at the BAR Conference on Saturday 14th May 2011. Well done also to the nine companies who have qualified for Certificates of Merit. Teacrate is the sole sponsor of CMOTY 2011 and we are again very proud to be supporting this great accolade. Good luck to all three finalists in the weeks ahead.
Monday 31st January
You may or may not be aware but today is "Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day". Sounds a bit odd, but it really is true and in honour of this great day, our man in the north, Dave Ewart, has been live on Radio Newcastle this morning talking all things bubble wrap. Welldone Dave!
Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day originated in the US ten years ago... (Only in America I hear you say!). But the tradition has remained strong ever since, being celebrated on the last Monday in January each year. It was started by a couple of bored DJ's looking to fill in time, and today takes the form of co-ordinated therapeutic 'bubble popping' amongst the many bubble wrap fans and addicts out there. On this day, fans can endulge their every fantasy - as long as it involves bubble wrap. Happy popping!
Thursday 27th January
There's a lot of activity going on behind the scenes at the moment in the planning of the forthcoming BAR Conference, which this year, will be held in Manchester. Teacrate will be playing a lead role in support of the event and specifically taking on a footballing angle with it being the FA Cup Final weekend. Our "FA Cup" sponsorship will bring the match live to conference delegates via a 60" plasma screen, as well as complimentary drinks.
Thursday 20th January
Teacrate will be exhibiting at the forthcoming Food and Drink Logistics Show (FDLS) at the Birmingham NEC, 27th February - 1st March 2011. Please come and visit us on Stand G68, where our food sector specialists can introduce you to our range of food industry products and services. Simply click on this link to register for your FREE EXHIBITION PASS. Teacrate was one of the first companies to exhibit at FDLS when the event was launched last year, as part of the larger Foodex show. The show is uniquely targeted towards those involved in the food and drink supply chains and is a great environment to learn about the latest products and services and to pick up ideas for improving efficiency and cutting costs in the supply chain. For extra value, this year the Food and Drink Logistics Show is co-located with the National Convenience Show, the Farm Shop and Deli Show and the International Forecourt and Fuel Equipment Show. Should be a busy one!
Wednesday 12th January 2011
As we plough into 2011, housing market and general economic gloom are common themes. But the self storage industry appears to be doing well. One of Albert Einstein's rules of work was to find simplicity out of clutter. However, theres nothing simple about clearing a house and deciding what to throw away. As a result, self storage companies have seen a growth in demand with their warehouses a common sight on the outskirts of towns and cities. Part of the answer of why people hire storage space is the state of the housing market. With the number of homeowners selling up before buying a new property there has been a record rise in self storage places being let. Another clue to why we have so many possessions to unload may be found in the make-up of society today. Many of us buy or rent a home long before we are married. When we decide to marry or cohabit we find we have two of everything.
Wednesday 22nd December
With just a few days left before Christmas, large swathes of UK business are now winding down for the Christmas break. And, as was the case at the beginning of the year, the last few days have been particularly challenging as we all struggle through this difficult weather. Teacrate drivers and depots have been coping very well in the conditions and I'm pleased to say that its been largely business as usual.
Things are very busy for us right now, supporting businesses undertaking office moves and the Christmas rush in general. Our depots will be operating between Christmas and the New Year with pre-arranged deliveries and collections.
I'd like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and prosperous New Year. If you have worked with Teacrate in 2010, thanks for your support. Merry Christmas also to my daughters Madison (6) and Brooke (9), who love to read Daddy's page each week, and are very excited to see what Santa's got for them!
Monday 13th December
We’re all going to be paying a bit more for everything come January with the rate of VAT increasing to 20%. Get double savings by stocking up on our discounted PC-2 and PC-6 double walled cartons in December before our offer expires at the end of the year and the VAT rate increases. Click here for further information on our offer.
Wednesday 1st December
Amid the doom and gloom of the housing market there is a little bright spark. There has been a sizeable rise in the number of million pound properties sold over the past year. The vast majority of these higher end properties are located in a few London neighbourhoods and reflect strong demand from wealthy foreign buyers and the relatively strong performance of the London and South East housing market.
Monday 22nd November
We've added some Frequently Asked Questions to the Teacrate website recently. These have been carefully designed to reflect the sorts of enquiries received daily from our customers. With relevant website links included at appropriate points the reader is navigated effortlessly to the products and services of interest to them. With Teacrate now servicing the needs of several market sectors and with there being various ways in which a customer can deal with us, we feel that these FAQs will enhance the service we offer to both new and existing customers.
Wednesday 17th November
New figures have revealed that renting a home is more expensive than buying one in 80% of British towns. Rents are typically 10% more expensive, although in some towns they exceed mortgage payments by more than 40%. The increased demand for rental properties which is driving higher rents is linked to the lack of affordable mortgages which has forced potential buyers to remain in the rental market.
Wednesday 10th November
Businesses outside London and the South East are proving more attractive as a place to work than the UK capital, according to a new You Gov survey. Research found that nearly two-thirds (61%) of employees surveyed regarded their closest city as a better business location than London. The majority (80%), however, are happy with where they work in terms of the quality of their workplace with less than a fifth (19%) being dissatisfied. The main complaint that British workers have is the distance between home and the workplace, with just over a quarter (26%) preferring to work somewhere closer to where they live. Traditionally London has been seen as the centre of business, but regional development initiatives, regeneration programmes and improvements in remote working technology have combined to give greater opportunity to Britain's regional cities.
Monday 8th November
A great deal of work is taking place in Teacrate at the moment on websites. We are preparing to move our sites to a new web platform which will give us greater flexibility and allow us to adapt our sites to changing demands much more quickly and easily. With much potential for Teacrate in web based opportunities we look forward to the outcomes from our first phase of development which are expected in January 2011. Related to web, and in particular to teacratepackaging.co.uk - Teacrate's buy-on-line packaging site - we have recently appointed a new national courier, so we expect real service improvements in this area going forward.
Monday 1st November
Its good to see so many taking advantage of our autumn special offer on removals boxes. We currently have a price freeze on two of our most popular cartons, the PC-2 and the PC-6. A minimum order quantity of 1440 applies in each case, but prices are being held at very competitive levels - £0.84 each on the PC-2 and £0.64 on the PC-6. As always we can deliver anywhere in the UK via our in-house fleet. For all orders placed before 5pm next day delivery is standard. Order now while stocks last!
Wednesday 27th October
The UK property and construction sectors will feel the pain of the latest government spending cuts, and this is likely to have a knock on effect on the whole economy according to real estate experts. Reductions in capital expenditure will have a significant impact on housing supply, especially social housing, which is already at historically low levels. A strong reliance on the private sector for the delivery of new homes will remain, to meet the projected demand of 240,000 new homes per annum.
Thursday 14th October
Its all go in the food side of our business at the moment! We're busy trialling the introduction of our standard food industry (FC4) crate with a major supermarket chain. Our customer wants to introduce an RTP solution into their meat supply chain, so we are working alongside them and some of their key meat suppliers to achieve this. Our FC4 Bale Arm crate is a popular choice for the storage and transportation of all sorts of meat products. It is the standard industry size of 600x400mm, compatible with supermarket trays and nests by 76%. The FC4 is very popular with fresh produce suppliers too. We also supply a slightly deeper version of the FC4 called the FC4D.
Wednesday 13th October
UK house prices remain under downward pressure as sellers outnumber potential buyers according to the latest RICS survey, and expectations are that prices are likely to fall further. Several respondents mentioned the forthcoming government public spending cuts and fears of redundancy as undermining the confidence of potential buyers.
Thursday 7th October
The perils of moving house! Take a look at this story. You’d think how could this happen? I bet they wish they’d used a removals company!
Bristol couple left feeling empty after 'hapless' flatmate loads up wrong car
WHEN Faye Pounder's flatmate offered to help her move house she gladly accepted, but his kind gesture went sour when he packed the wrong car, which then drove off. Miss Pounder, 26, and her fiancé Ali Walker, 32, were moving out of their flat in Bristol, on Monday afternoon. She had put all her important documents into one bag which included the car tax, her camera, her clothes and her laptop. She and her former flatmate Paul Robins then made shuttle runs loading up her car, or so she thought. When Mr Robins ran in to the house to tell her the car had been stolen she panicked until she came out and saw her Citroen Xsara Picasso in the same spot she had left it. The awful truth then dawned on Mr Robins, who realised he had been filling the boot of another Citroen Xsara Picasso which had since driven away. Miss Pounder said: "It's been a total nightmare. I'd separated out the important things and put them all into one bag to make sure they were together. It included my fiance's entire record collection."My flat mate is quite hapless and I think the other car was open and because it was the same make as mine and a similar colour he just assumed it was mine. He said there was an older person's shopping trolley already in the boot so I don't know why he didn't click."We were supposed to be going to Alton Towers for my birthday but the tickets were in the bag. It's all been a bit of a nightmare and not a very nice way to spend your birthday.”"We just hope that the person will check their boot and realise the mistake and return the things or hand them in somewhere. I spoke to Paul and he just said he wants to jump off a cliff because he feels so bad." The couple, who have now moved to Cornwall to work in a pub, are hoping they will eventually recover their possessions.
Monday 4th October
If you are a Teacrate customer did you know that you are entitled to the free use of “Cratelink” our online crate management system? This market leading tracking system is available to customers 24 hours a day via a secure login from the Teacrate website. "Cratelink" enables you to track your deliveries, place or amend orders and perform a whole range of additional functions, including the generation of reports and download copies of delivery and collection notes. The beauty of the system is that you can manage your orders at your convenience – and all within a few clicks of the mouse. If you’re not already using Cratelink you could be missing out. Speak to us now to find out how it can benefit you!
Friday 1st October
Throughout the summer months Teacrate has been busy with activities to support the Commercial Moving Group. We have again signed up as joint sponsors of the 2011 Commercial Mover of the Year Award and I am personally delighted to be involved in such a worthy and prestigious industry event. Hot on the heels of the Ryder Cup, Teacrate is supporting the 2010 CMG Golf Tournament which tees off on 5th October at Staverton Park, Daventry. Following the format of last years tournament there will be an individual and Stableford competition, using full handicaps, played within a drawn four ball. Up to 48 golfers can be accommodated on the day with a package cost for golf and dinner of £60 per head. We hope to see many of the CMG companies represented!
Thursday 30th September
The holiday season is over and after a couple of weeks off and some time working through half year figures and plans we move forward into the second half of our financial year. There are plenty of deals and special offers for Teacrate customers this Autumn. Our successful High Five initiative continues, where as a contracted customer exceeding a minimum level spend with Teacrate, you become eligible for a 5-way incentive package. This includes free deliveries, extended credit, retro rebates, guaranteed pricing and discounted rates for crate collection from any of our 8 nationwide depots. On Packaging, we have extended our summer Special Offer on PC-2 and PC-6 boxes throughout September and into October. Check out our recession busting prices here.
Monday 16th August
Some useful information for domestic movers has recently come out of a survey of UK removal companies conducted by reallymoving.com. The survey reveals the top 5 tasks most commonly not done or forgotten by home movers on their moving day:
1. Dismantling of furniture - many forget to dismantle flat packed furniture making removals particularly difficult as removers struggle to negotiate corridors and stairs
2. Disconnecting white goods - white goods that remain plugged in are often a frustration to removals companies as many are not insured to perform 'handyman' roles
3. Incorrect or incomplete packing - another common cause of removals slowdown, with some home owners forgetting to empty the loft or garage and frantically trying to get it done on the big day
4. Packing a survival kit - for the homeowner, packing a useful box of tea, coffee and snacks was commonly forgotten, leading to frustration at the other end as the family realises that they cannot have a recharging brew!
5. Telling relevant firms/people - several movers reported home owners often forgetting to let the relevant people know that they had moved house. Utilities companies and the Inland Revenue came near the top of the list, but many forgot to tell their own in laws. Coincidence - who knows!!
Wednesday 5th August
Staying with the subject of our buy-on-line removals packaging website - teacratepackaging.co.uk - we have recently launched a brand new blog on the site. Through our blog all interested parties can now communicate with each other in real time. We think that this great new facility will give readers lots of insights to the Teacrate Packaging business and its people and also to the wider Teacrate community. Its a space where we and other guest bloggers can post a wide variety of useful tips, advice and comment around the many subject areas and experiences relating to moving and packing, and you can give us your take on it as well. Please go and take a look. Its in its early stages right now, but we're planning to build it up over time. Please post any views or thoughts you may have at the moment, or if you'd like to submit a guest blog post for us to consider, please send it to Ruth Scruton in our Marketing team.
Wednesday 28th July
I'm delighted to announce that our online removals packaging business teacratepackaging.co.uk, has recently agreed an exclusive partnership with reallymoving.com. This will bring Teacrate fantastic promotional opportunities and greater exposure to thousands of reallymoving.com visitors as they search for other related home moving services on this fully integrated, market-leading site. Reallymoving.com established in 1999, provides quotes for a variety of essential home moving services including removals, conveyancing and surveying. They have built a reputable network of service providers operating across the UK. Effectively, it’s a one-stop-shop for consumers researching and sourcing the services they need when moving house. Reallymoving.com also offers domestic removals companies throughout the UK a removals leads service. Sign up now for a months free trial and discover how reallymoving.com can help your business.
Monday 19th July
As recently publicised in Removals and Storage Magazine and in the news pages of our website, Teacrate's mid sized lidded crate (the 'LC2'), has been renamed the 'stair crate' by the removals industry! This particular crate was developed for the retail trade initially, but is proving a real winner in removals as well. Amidst health and safety concerns surrounding the handling of larger crates when they are fully loaded (particularly on stairs), the 'stair crate' can offer an alternative and safer solution. Due to its compact size, handling is greatly improved, supporting health and safety all round. The stair crate is now being widely used in commercial removals and particularly on government sector jobs where there is commonly a greater emphasis on health and safety. Like all our other crate products the 'stair crate' is available on next day delivery to locations across the UK, and it can be custom branded if required.
Wednesday 7th July
Some news to report on the PHS Group front. PHS Datasafe has been re-branded including a name change to PHS Recordsmanagement. Its new name better represents the services offered, which are not limited to storing documents and records but also managing files, storing media and computer backup tapes, advising clients on destruction dates, all backed up by an efficient retrieval service in as little as 2 hours. Their website recordsmanagement.co.uk has also had a bit of a makeover. In early July, a brand new division, PHS Compliance was launched, which will deliver multi disciplined services in the area of legislative compliance. Its been formed from a merger of two market leading specialists in the safety field coming under the PHS umbrella - Epsilon Test Services and CLM Compliance. The newly formed PHS Compliance will offer services relating to electricity, gas, fire and lighting safety, where the appropriate mix of inspection, testing, remedial work, planned maintenance and emergency repair work can be delivered to meet individual client needs.
Wednesday 30th June
According to the Nationwide Building Society house prices were up again in June, but by only 0.1%. Although the positive upward trend continues, the June increase is down on the May increase of 0.5%. The average property in the UK now costs around £170,000. House prices have risen by 3% since the start of the year according to Nationwide's index, but prices are rising more slowly now than they did this time last year. Experts believe that this slowdown may be due an increase in the number of properties coming on to the market, perhaps in response to the scrapping of hips. The level of demand in the market has remained broadly stable.
Monday 21st June
More homes are going on the market in England and Wales due to the scrapping of Home Information Packs (Hips) according to surveyors. The most recent survey from RICS reported a 'sharp increase' in new instructions from prospective sellers. Almost a quarter more surveyors reported a rise in prices than reported a fall in the three months to May, and surveyors are generally confident that sales will continue to pick up over the summer months. Despite continuing concerns about mortgage finance, the increased housing supply, as a result of the abolition of hips is supporting this optimism.
Wednesday 9th June
We've launched an exciting new initiative this week called "High Five". Its a 5-way incentive for becoming a contracted customer including free deliveries, extended credit, retro rebate, guaranteed prices and discounted rates for crate collection. This brand new scheme essentially rewards the loyalty of customers in contract with us. Take a closer look at how the High Five scheme works and how it could benefit you by clicking here.
Wednesday 26th May
Home movers in London have least possessions according to a recent survey. This is just one of the useful insights from a survey by reallymoving.com, which analysed requests for removals services in 2009.Home movers in the East of England are most likely to hoard their belongings, whereas Londoners have the lowest volume of possessions, according to the findings. The average Londoner moved 737 cubic feet of possessions. By contrast, those in the East of England have belongings totalling 911 cubic feet! Home movers in Scotland had the second lowest volume of possessions with 778 cubic feet.
Thursday 20th May
The Housing Market Rockets! So says a headline from the Daily Express earlier this week. The article reports that further signs of recovery are emerging with evidence that mortgage approvals had almost doubled. Increased consumer confidence, low interest rates and better weather are underpinning this recovery. Confidence in the market is high - a ‘Your Move’ survey reports over three quarters of home owners believing house prices will continue to rise over the next year. The effect of the Stamp Duty holiday that ended in January needs to be thrown into the mix but overall the trend is up and things are pointing in the right direction!
Monday 17th May
I’m pleased to hear that Pickfords Business Moving were overall winners of the prestigious Commercial Mover of the Year award for 2010. Congratulations and well done to Pickfords, also to BCL (the runner up) and all the Certificate of Merit award winners. The overall winner was revealed at the BAR Annual Conference in Bristol last weekend at the Gala dinner. With the focus firmly on quality, entrants were put through their paces on their quality management systems and processes, which highlighted some really excellent practice. Teacrate is again delighted to sponsor this key industry event which continues to drive standards to the very highest levels and recognises the excellent work undertaken in the commercial moving sector.
Wednesday 12th May
Historic change is taking place in British politics this week with a coalition government now at the helm. The first coalition government Britain has seen for 70 years. Cameron’s arrival in Downing Street last night marks the end of 13 years of Labour rule. The Conservative – Lib Dem alliance led by Cameron and with Nick Clegg as his deputy moves us into a new political era. Who knows how all this is going to play out? The idea that politicians of different persuasions will come together, overcome their differences and act in the interests of the country is one thing but it remains to be seen how this will work in practice. The first priority has to be the pressing economic situation and action to reduce the massive budget deficit. Details emerging suggest that there will be major focus on making £6bn of spending cuts this year, with an emergency budget to take place within the next 50 days. Perhaps we should brace ourselves for what lies ahead!!
Thursday 6th May
As we go to the polls today to cast our votes, consider some of the ‘dos and don’ts’ of polling station etiquette. Useful stuff for first time voters and maybe just points to note for the rest of us! You can take your dog with you in an ‘accompanying role’ rather than ‘free range’. Try not to turn up dressed in party insignia or emblems – it’s about not intimidating other voters about who they should support. Taking photos is strictly prohibited inside polling stations due to the British democracy working on the basis of the secret ballot. If you’ve been down the pub and feel a bit tipsy, you can still vote – but be prepared to be asked a few questions by staff and perhaps being told to come back later! Openly discussing the candidates with friends or a spouse is not allowed as it may unsettle or influence other voters. Children are welcome at the polling station, but don’t let your child mark your ballot paper for you, as it will become void. Don’t sign your ballot paper either, as it will be rejected (the secret ballot thing again). As an aside - Do the Royals vote? It depends whether they’re a minor or major royal. Although the Queen lives in Westminster, she is not on the electoral register there. As head of state, she’s part of the institution, so cannot vote. If you make a mistake on your ballot paper, you can re-do it, provided you haven’t already put it in the box. Staff will cancel your paper and issue you with a new one. And finally, what if there’s a fire? Get out quickly! Staff will probably re-open the polling station from the boot of a car – that’s been done in the past!
Monday 19th April
FRL Recruitment, a provider of professional recruitment solutions to the Facilities Management industry has released a report on current recruitment trends and the state of the FM industry in the UK. The report suggests that the support services industry has been one of the least affected by the recession. In 2009, the majority of FM service providers experienced an average increase in their revenues of 10.8% - a growth shared by large and small organisations alike. Indications are that there is still significant growth in the FM market and that the numbers employed in the UK’s FM industry are likely to rise. I guess that’s positive news for the range of organisations, involved in servicing the needs of the FM sector - including those in commercial removals and relocations.
Monday 12th April
Liverpool looks to be the favoured location for up to 1,000 Ministry of Justice jobs, which Alistair Darling announced would be relocated from London saving £41m. The Liverpool Echo has recently reported that the move of these jobs to the city will be a key step towards the creation of a “civil service campus” in the Pall Mall financial district. Liverpool is likely to face stiff competition from Manchester that is building its own civil service hub with proposals for offices capable of supporting 3,500 staff. Over the next 5 years 15,000 civil service jobs will be relocated from the capital and South East in the drive for efficiency savings. Over the longer term it’s anticipated that a third of the Whitehall workforce will move out of London.
Thursday 1st April
It’s the first week of the PHS Group’s new financial year which is being marked with the launch of a brand new Group website. The new site has been many months in the making, and with well over 500 pages of content gives a range of users a comprehensive and updated overview of the diversity of companies and products coming under the PHS brand. You can browse the new site at www.phs.co.uk. If you wish to give us feedback on the site, you can do this via the Group contact us page. The site of course contains a section on PHS Teacrate, which has multiple links through to Teacrate’s dedicated site. I hope you find the new site helpful and informative. Spot the April Fools gag! Clue … there’s something in the air!
Wednesday 24th March
Reaction to today's budget announcement on the raising of the Stamp Duty threshold to £250K has been largely positive. Estimates suggest that it will remove about 50% of transactions from the Stamp Duty system. Estate Agents are upbeat with the National Association of Estate Agents commenting that it has added a new rung to the property ladder which will help thousands of young families. The Home Builders Federation too say that the move will give a huge boost to the market and will be of particular benefit to first time buyers. RICS believe that the change could help bring annual housing transactions back up over the 1 million mark for the first time since 2007. Changes at the other end of the market indicate how this will be paid for, with Stamp Duty increasing to 5% on homes worth over £1 million. Some feel that this is a tax on Southerners with 81% of homes in this price band being located in London and the south east.
Monday 15th March
It’s been almost a month since the Movers and Storers Show and the feedback that I’ve received on it from the Teacrate staff attending has been very positive. The post show round-up produced by the organisers reported a total of 546 visitors coming through the door – which although down on previous years was a pretty healthy attendance level. On the Teacrate stand we welcomed many of our existing customers as well as a number of new contacts and we have since been busy with all our follow-up activity. Many congratulations to David Laurie of Wrekin Removals who was the lucky winner of our Show competition and recipient of a nifty Series 2000 Magliner.
Wednesday 3rd March
With a gloomy February behind us, and the green shoots of Spring to look forward to, its still a mixed picture out there on the economic front. One piece of news on the positive side - the financial strength of businesses has been shown to be increasing – with Experian’s latest Insolvency Index revealing that in January the rate of business failure fell to its lowest point since June 2007. On the other hand, the public sector braces itself for a major hit with cost cutting being top of the agenda. A lot of activity is expected here over the coming months that will have far-reaching effects throughout the UK economy. Civil service re-locations are being looked at, with up to 15,000 posts to be targeted for relocation out of the South East. A report on this is due for release this month – so that one should make interesting reading for all of us involved in the commercial moves sector.
Friday 19th February
Reloc8, an up-and-coming player in corporate relocation, corporate interiors and workspace consultancy has recently signed a 4-year exclusive crate supply deal with Teacrate. We are, of course, delighted about this development and excited too, about the prospect of working collaboratively with Reloc8 and their clients to support their new ‘Relocrate’ service with our branded crates. ‘Relocrate’ is a tailored crate rental service forming part of Reloc8’s suite of fully intergrated moves and moves management services. With reassurance of product availability and support on a national basis, Reloc8 chose Teacrate as their strategic partner for this collaborative venture, which I’m sure, will translate into a very positive development of the Reloc8 brand.
Wednesday 10th February
We’re making final preparations for our presence at next week’s Movers and Storer’s Show at the Telford International Centre, and it looks to be a busy one now with all the stand space fully booked. Key Teacrate staff involved with the industry will be attending, including Simon Johns (Sales Director), Paul Bullock (Key Account Manager) and Dave Ewart (Business Development Manager). Teacrate are exhibiting on Stand G73, so please, if you are attending the show, drop by and say hello! We’ll have our leading products on display and our specialist team will be happy to assist you with any enquiries. Look out for our show special offer as well!
Thursday 4th February
Following Teacrate’s acquisition of GB Nationwide back last year, we were pleased to continue their annual charitable tradition of providing the free use of crates across London to support 'Crisis Christmas'. Crisis, the homeless charity has been running their highly successful 'Crisis Christmas' operation for the past 38 years, where essential support and services are brought together and provided to the City’s most vulnerable. Each year 'Crisis Christmas' allows the homeless to be provided with food, companionship, a warm and safe place to stay, medical care and specialist advice from a number of centres around London over the festive period. The availability of crates is essential with all the logistical challenges that this operation presents. The latest 2009 operation helped many people on the streets of London and we are happy to support such a worthy cause. Read more about Teacrate's involvement in Crisis Christmas here.
Wednesday 27th January
For the smaller removals companies out there - you may be interested to know that Teacrate can now offer removals packaging DIRECT TO YOUR CLIENTS. If you don’t currently offer packaging supplies or are looking to reduce your stockholding of these items, then why not consider partnering with our online packaging company teacratepackaging.co.uk. Here, home-movers can browse our extensive product range and order online for delivery direct to their door the next day, anywhere in the UK. By partnering with teacratepackaging.co.uk you can provide extra value to your customers, and, as all referral orders are subject to commission – you could earn nicely out of it as well! To find out more please contact Martin Hunt on 0800 980 6996
Wednesday 20th January
The CMOTY 2010 competition entry deadline is looming with just a few days to go before entry forms have to be submitted. If you haven’t already got your entry form and guidance notes you can download them from our updated CMOTY webpage, by clicking here. This year there are no award categories – the award has been designed to recognise and reward best practices and partnerships across the board, with the judging criteria focusing on; overall quality, budgets, client participation, schedule, innovation, flexibility, project management and communication process. One overall winner will be chosen from three finalists and if last year is anything to go by, the standards will be extremely high and the competition intense. So, why not give it a shot and get your entry in now! The deadline for entries to the competition organisers - the BAR - is 29th January 2010.
Wednesday 13th January 2010
Happy New Year! Well here we are in 2010! So far, the new year has greeted us with some pretty extreme weather conditions! The recent weather though has been a minor diversion from the big question on many people’s minds as to when we are likely to start moving out of recession. Many business people including MandS Chairman Sir Stuart Rose expect things to remain tough in 2010. Teacrate has seen a promising start to the year having been chosen as strategic partner by commercial relocation company Reloc8 Ltd in a four year crate supply agreement. This is significant for us - it is testament to the ongoing commitment that Teacrate gives its customers, underpinned by our investment in market leading products and best in class service.
Wednesday 10th December
The Noah’s Ark Trust does vital work to help children and young people through the very difficult time of bereavement. Through Britannia, one of Teacrate’s commercial moves customers we have recently donated 100 crates to support the Trust in its move into new premises in Worcestershire. The Trust’s, larger and more spacious new premises will provide the capacity needed for them to work with more children. The site is more favourably located with better parking facilities allowing better access for families.
Wednesday 2nd December
Almost a fifth of home owners said that they would move because they are simply bored with their current property according to a new survey by Cooperative Bank Mortgages. One quarter even said that they'd had the urge to move again immediately after settling in to a new home! The main reasons for moving home, reported by most people are to get more space and to live closer to work. On average, home owners tend to feel the urge to up sticks and move on again after 7 years - the '7 year itch'!
Tuesday 1st December
As official sponsors of the Commercial Mover of the Year (‘CMOTY’) awards for the past couple of years, we at Teacrate are enthusiastic supporters of this prestigious event. We have recently been finalising our involvement in the 2010 competition and I am pleased to announce that Teacrate will again be supporting the proceedings through our sponsorship. A three-way joint sponsorship arrangement has been agreed for 2010 involving Teacrate, Reason Global Insurance and Wendover. Looking ahead to the forthcoming awards, it looks set to be another really competitive one, with the industry’s top performers battling it out!
Wednesday 25th November
Teacrate is planning a customer survey in the near future to help us keep abreast of industry trends and to ensure that the products and services we offer reflect the changing needs of the market place. Customer feedback will tell us how well we are performing and help us identify any gaps in our product and service offerings. It can also give us a helpful steer on trends or issues that may be of concern both now and into the future, for example in the area of sustainability. If you wish to share any thoughts or ideas that you might have into the process at any time, you can do so by e-mailing Teacrate’s Sales Director, Simon Johns on email@example.com
Friday 20th November PHS Datasafe, the Group’s secure document and data storage specialist has more than doubled its capacity in the 18 months since becoming a PHS company. Across its five facilities, it can now handle 2.5m cubic feet of records or 25 million individual files! This makes the company a leading contender in the marketplace for secure off site storage for boxes, files and documents, including wills, plans, certificates, medical records and HR files. Their sophisticated electronic document retrieval system allows customers access to their documents within 2 hours. They also offer media storage services including remote computer and critical data backup, as well as confidential data destruction. Read more about PHS Datasafe and its services here.
Thursday 12th November
We’ve launched a great little special offer for November. There’s a very competitive price on our Archive Boxes for all those filing jobs. Stock up now - after all, what better time to be doing a bit of office de-cluttering before the festive season is upon us! There’s a chance to stock up too on Correx Sheeting if you’re running low. This stuff is brilliant for lots of site protection uses during moves and cost effective because it can be re-used. Domestic Movers - are you aware of Getamover.co.uk? It’s an online leads generation service providing requests for quotations at favourable rates. Through our partnership with Getamover.co.uk we are able to offer you 2 weeks worth of FREE qualified leads. Don’t delay, call Nicola on 07903 313396 for details.
Monday 9th November
Existing customer The Whittle Group has shown further long-term commitment to Teacrate with their recent signing of an exclusive 3-year crate supply contract to support their UK wide Business Relocation Division. We are obviously delighted with these developments, and we’ll be doing everything we can to ensure that this relationship goes from strength to strength. It’s pleasing - as a service provider - to see such relationships cementing and to have the reassurance that our customers are seeing real value from the services that we provide.
Friday 30th October
The 2009 Poppy Appeal is well underway with this years campaign focusing on the Armed Forces serving in Afghanistan and their families. We're wearing our poppies here at Teacrate and we have donated some of our ex-rental crates to support the fundraising effort of the Warton and District Branch of the Royal British Legion in Lancashire. The best of luck to all involved there and I'm pleased that we have been of assistance.
Monday 26th October
Welcome to the team Mani! Mani Channa has joined us recently from Avis Car Hire to take up a new position within our Telesales team. We have expanded the size of our London based team so that each of our field sales staff may be partnered by an office based ‘buddy’ – all as part of our newly re-focused Four Hats sales strategy. Mani has responsibility for sales and account management in the Scotland and North East regions working in close partnership with our man on the ground there, Dave Ewart. I hear that Mani has settled in very well. All the very best Mani, I hope you enjoy your new venture with Teacrate!
Monday 19th October
Teacrate – the UK’s Local Crate Rental Company continues on its tour of the UK … that’s our current advertising campaign with Removals and Storage Magazine. We will be appearing in the November edition with a profile of our Livingston Service Centre, and Centre Manager, Andy Green. Congratulations to competition winner David Strank of Stranks Removals who was awarded £50 in credit vouchers for correctly guessing that the Teacrate van was indeed heading north for Livingston. Can you spot the famous Scottish landmark in the background of the advert?
Thursday 15th October I’ve been reading about de-cluttering! That’s in relation to selling a home and the idea that there’s an opportunity for domestic removers to offer a pre-sale de-cluttering service which could generate extra revenue in these harder times. We know that tidy and clutter free homes are more attractive to potential buyers and without clutter rooms can appear larger… all good selling points. With the average time taken for a property to sell being 10-12 weeks (and a lot longer in the current climate) – there’s an opportunity for removers to step in and offer an interim de-cluttering service to help clients sell their properties more quickly. This service could be charged for (in terms of container rental and storage) – or alternatively provided as an incentive for the booking of the full move once the house is sold. Interesting!
Monday 12th October
With Christmas getting ever closer, Teacrate has launched its Christmas campaign directly into the Food and Retail sectors. Supply chains in these sectors face big logistics challenges to move huge volumes and varieties of products to the many thousands of retail outlets in good time for the Christmas buying period. We can actively support these efforts and our Christmas campaign focuses on the benefits of ad hoc and short term crate rental from Teacrate for managing periods of peak demand for storage and transportation. Our network of 9 fully stocked depots across the UK allows us to react quickly and efficiently to demand – delivering crates wherever and whenever they are needed.
Wednesday 7th October
Following the success of last years Movers and Storers Show, Teacrate will be exhibiting again at the 2010 show at the Telford International Centre in February. With stand bookings ahead of where they were last year it looks to be another popular and well attended event. I understand that the show organisers will be launching a new website for the show in November – so look out for that. Our preparations for the show are underway and we look forward to welcoming new and existing customers to our stand. We’re considering showcasing a new product, which I can reveal more about closer to the time.
Thursday 1st Oct
Swine flu .... many have had it, or know somebody who's had it, but how will it really affect our businesses? A new report published by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) and the Business Continuity Institute (BCI) has warned UK businesses to prepare for staff absence rates of up to 50% - for periods of between 2 and 4 weeks this autumn and winter, as the second wave of Swine Flu is expected to hit. Providing a safe and hygienic workplace is key to preventing the spread of the infection and the PHS Group through their Direct and Washrooms divisions are actively supporting businesses in this area with their new 'No Germs' range of products
Monday 28th September
Continuing on the housing market theme, there is evidence that much of the new house buying (particularly by first time buyers) has been financed substantially by loans from parents, who have provided money for their childrens' mortgage deposits. A recent survey by property website FindaProperty.com showed that nearly half of first time buyers received financial help from their families. Lenders are typically asking for a 25% deposit prior to granting a first time loan - and with many first time buyers struggling to find this sort of cash, the Bank of Mum and Dad is increasingly helping out!
Wednesday 23rd September
The UK economy has begun to emerge from recession but growth next year will be fragile according to a forecast by the CBI. Household consumer spending will remain tight, businesses will be knuckling down and the government will be pulling its reins in. Turning to the housing market, I read that house sales fell in August from July - the first drop this year in fact. But sales in August were still double those of January and were 19% higher than August last year.
Friday 18th September
I'm very pleased to report the overall positive feedback I'm getting from our new GB Nationwide customers following their acquisition earlier this year. Our teams across the business have worked very hard over the past couple of months to ensure a smooth and trouble-free transition for ex-GB customers. We are undertaking a programme of communication including personal visits by our Business Development Managers and follow-up service calls from our friendly Telesales team. As a result we are happy to see that many ex-GB cutomers are already enjoying improved crate rental services with Teacrate, re-inforced by access to a wider range of products and the additional support offered through our online tracking and ordering system 'Cratelink'
Monday 14th September
Last week the Government gave the go-ahead for the building of 2,000 new council houses across England. The project is being described as the biggest of its kind in 20 years.... as most social housing is normally built by housing associations. I suspect that the Government is doing this to help the ailing construction industry and to create jobs - as well as to help meet the country's longer term housing needs.
Wednesday 9th September
Each of Teacrate's market sectors - Removals, Food, Retail and Packaging have always been served by dedicated sector sales people. With the launch of our new initiative 'Operation Four Hats' all members of our sales team will now work across all four of Teacrate's markets within specified geographical territories. Our new approach has been introduced to increase service levels by maximising our use of resources within the existing team as well as to bring about more exposure in our key markets.
Thursday 27th August
I've been reading some positive news today on the housing market with the Nationwide reporting August as being the fourth consecutive month of house price rises. This is attributed mainly to low interest rates, and the demand for homes continuing to outweigh supply. The mortgage industry are careful to point out that this is not likely to be the start of a housing boom and the feeling here is that there could be a very bumpy road to recovery. Housebuilders are reporting improved trading conditions and are referring to a stabilisation in the housing market.
Monday 24th August
As England celebrate the Ashes (probably with a shorter and more civilised drinking session than last time!) we've been busy here today with our websites. The PHS Group site is currently being updated and the Marketing Department at PHS has been chasing down volunteers from across the divisions to model for the new home page which will feature staff and products. Graeme Ede, one of our Business Development Managers, took to the wicket for Teacrate, modelling in his hi-viz with a few of our popular crates. Nice one Graeme! I'm looking forward to seeing the pictures!
Friday 14th August
If you are in the baking industry you may know that Teacrate works alongside Bakers Basco who manage a pool of circa 2 million bread baskets to various plant bakeries throughout the UK. The group also employs a dedicated asset recovery team in their fight to reduce the number of branded baskets and equipment that is being used illegally. A huge number of baskets are 'lost' each year costing the baking industry millions. Teacrate supports Bakers Basco in the provision of replacement baking trays and equipment where illegal equipment has been seized by Basco's recovery team. Teacrate - with their nationwide coverage, next day delivery and flexible payment options are best placed to offer a viable and cost effective replacement option.
Wednesday 12th August
I'm hearing that crates are becoming a rare commodity in some quarters. In fact, just recently, Teacrate was approached by a large commercial mover because their regular crate supplier was unable to fulfil their orders. Teacrate offers the widest range of products to the market with the widest availability throughout the UK via our network of 9 strategically located and fully stocked depots. Following our acquisition of GB Nationwide, Teacrate is now the only truly national supplier.
Monday 10th August
I am delighted to announce that on 31st July, Teacrate acquired GB Nationwide Crate Hire. GB Nationwide has an excellent name within the industry and was the number 2 in the market place and our major national competitor. In today’s difficult economic climate this acquisition gives Teacrate the opportunity to further develop and grow its business.
Friday 7th August
Teacrate now offers an e-invoicing facility to all its customers, where invoices and account statements can be received via email rather than by post. Its really straightforward to set up - just contact Gurpreet Metharu at GurpreetM@treacrate.com, who can assist you or call our main switchboard on 020 8282 0000. Our e-invoicing option provides added convenience with email now being the main form of communication for many of us.
Thursday 30th July
Being in the midst of the growing season for fruit and veg right now, Teacrate is seeing a lot of interest in its food crates and trays. And with increasing pressure to use environmentally sustainable products, many suppliers are opting for Returnable Transit Packaging (RTP) over cardboard boxes as the preferred carrier for food products. There are strong cost arguements for using RTP as well. Recently a fruit supplies customer reported that the move to RTP will save the business approximately 60% in packaging costs over the next 3 years.
Monday 27th July
Any football fans may be interested to know that Teacrate has recently been involved in moving the FA's headquarters from Soho Square to its new purpose built home in Wembley Stadium. Teacrate supplied its longstanding customer, Relocate London with crates for the entire move.
Friday 24th July
One of our leading customers in the food processing industry - Cargill, has presented us with a recognition award for our outstanding contribution to their business and for high achievement in the areas of innovation and customer focus. This is a great accolade for Teacrate, showing the high service levels that we deliver and the commitment of our staff across the UK.
Monday 20th July
A lot of people in the PHS Group have been working very hard on the WAWE environmental initiative, which stands for Water, Air, Waste and Energy. It looks like the hard work is paying off - with PHS announcing a 5% reduction in its carbon footprint. Read more about how this has been achieved on the PHS Group site
Friday 17th July
With The Ashes first test taking place in Cardiff last week, I was really pleased to be able to entertain some of our customers at the SWALEC stadium in Cardiff. The PHS Group are sponsoring the National Indoor Cricket Centre at the ground which meant we were able to get tickets for this great sporting event. A fantastic venue, and even if you’re not a Cricket fan it’s a great place to visit. Our customers, Premier Movers, Morgan Cole, Comet and DTZ certainly enjoyed the event and good weather held out for us!
Friday 3rd July 2009 Good news for retail and logistics customers. Teacrate has acquired the manufacturing tool for our popular mid-sized retail tote - the LC2. This means that we can assure availability and supply to the market. It also means that we have been able to introduce a number of improvements to the design of the LC2 based on customer feedback. Click here to read more.