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Gloucestershire Business News

Covid claims Cheltenham firm

Cheltenham-based plumbing and heating specialists Shackleton, Wintle and Lane has gone into administration with the loss of 69 jobs - the latest victim of Covid lockdowns.

The company, which operated in a variety of sectors within the construction and property industries, suffered losses of £400,000.

It had been involved in new-build housing schemes and bespoke property renovations working on domestic heating, plumbing and electrical servicing, repairs and installations.

Established in 1978, Shackleton & Wintle employed 120 staff in 2016 at its headquarters in Old Station Drive, Leckhampton, Cheltenham, when it acquired WJL Electrical Services and was very much in expansion mode, with an ever-increasing client base including a number of national housebuilders.

In 2019, a new managing director, Simon Marklew, joined from Wolseley UK, as the company aimed for further growth.

A spokesman for the joint administrators Mazars said: "The Company had seen strong profitability and year-on-year sales growth of 10% in the first half of the year ended 31st July 2020, but the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, with its associated lockdowns, saw an almost complete shutdown of the business resulting in losses of circa £400,000 during the year.

"The pandemic continued to make its mark during 2021, with global material shortages, building materials price increases and a shortage of labour meaning that the company was unable to meet significantly increased demand for its services as restrictions eased. During this period sales continued to fall and the company accrued further losses.

"As a result, the directors decided that the company had no option but to formally cease trading and be placed into administration.

The reduced workforce of 69 employees were made redundant on 29th September 2021.

Mark Boughey, joint administrator, said: "It is sad to see a company like Shackleton, Wintle and Lane Limited fail as a direct result of the prolonged impact of the Covid pandemic, having previously traded successfully for nearly 40 years.

"The directors had to make the difficult decision to cease trading and enter administration to prevent the position for creditors worsening and we are now working closely with the company to oversee the winding down of the business's affairs for all of its financial stakeholders".

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