Touch of glass as North Wales home improvements firm celebrates 40th anniversary in style with Grand Designs extension

A booming home improvement company is celebrating its 40th anniversary in style by investing £150,000 in a spectacular Grand Designs-like showroom extension.

As a result of surging demand, Peninsula, based in Gaerwen on Anglesey, is looking to recruit four people to create two new installation teams for its clients across North Wales and into the North West of England.

The firm already employs 30 staff while sales soared to a record high of more than £3.5 million last year.

It’s come a long way from when the company was founded in 1984 by the late Barrie Grayson, the father of Chairman Ken Grayson.

Originally based in Pwllheli, it became the first manufacturer and installer of PVC windows and conservatories in North Wales.

More recently growth has been fuelled by the decision to specialise in high-end glazing products like the ones frequently featured in television makeover shows like Grand Designs.

The company’s burgeoning reputation has seen it being signed up as approved North Wales dealers for big name European brands like Solurlux, Internorm, Rationel and Velfac.

The upshot is that the average value of each job has increased dramatically, including several contracts of more than £200,000.

Ken Grayson said: “I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved and it’s down to having a brilliant team and sticking to the core principles my Dad instilled as an infinite perfectionist and a stickler for quality.

“We don’t actually manufacture windows any more but we offer such a wide variety of products from all sorts of different partners, to suit every budget and every style.

“We’re very proud of the way the company’s evolved and has partnered up with some very exclusive high end brands from Europe.

“Programmes like Grand Designs have raised the bar, particularly in the new-build market with people looking for highly insulated products that also look brilliant.”

According to Sales Director Dylan Hulse, the investment in the steel-framed showroom extension – with a nine metre wide, three metre high sliding door, an eight metre long roof light and a sedum roof – was a vote of confidence in the future of Peninsula.

After a career in the RAF as an intelligence analyst, Dylan signed up for what was meant to be a “temporary job” as a member of the sales team while he figured out what to do with the rest of his life.

He said: “I felt I fitted in straight away and I really enjoyed working here. I took on more responsibility quite quickly and was made a director in 2008.

“I’ve now been here 20 years and I’ve been on a journey with the company, trebling our turnover in recent years by moving into this niche, high end market and becoming specialists in our field.

“Things like the drive towards net zero, Passiv houses and triple glazing are more important than ever before, less of a luxury and more of a necessity in these days of spiralling energy costs.

“We always traditionally covered the North Wales area down towards Mid Wales but we’re seeing more of a push now towards the Chester, Wirral and South Manchester areas. We’ve also done jobs as far afield as Cornwall and London.

“As we continue to grow, the new extension is a big investment but one we feel will pay dividends for us as it provides the perfect way of showcasing some of these fantastic products.”

Christian Hough, Head of Installers and Technical Surveyor, has been with the company for six years and says he loves working there.

He said: “Peninsula is a brilliant company. I’ve been in the trade for going on 25 years and the best period of my work life is right at this minute.

“What sets Peninsula apart is that we do stuff that nobody else can do and that’s exciting.

“Ken’s got a very good ethos of promoting within so that everybody is on board with the values of the company and the constant quest for excellence. Dylan’s a brilliant example of that.”

It was a sentiment echoed by Operations Director Samantha Hayte who started out in the call centre and worked her way up the ranks.

She said: “Even though it’s a family business, everyone who works here is like family anyway.

“What I’m most proud of is that we want to deliver great products and excellent service because  at the end of the day we want the customer to be happy and delighted

“We achieved a satisfaction level of 95 per cent in an independent survey conducted by the Consumer Protection Association and I think that speaks volumes about Peninsula.

“I’ve been here for 24 years now and it’s still a pleasure to come into work every single day.”

The new extension will be officially unveiled at a special 40th anniversary celebration on Thursday, July 18.

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