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Gloucestershire Business News

Former MD of Barnwood Shopfitting recognised with national award

Former managing director of Gloucester-based Barnwood Shopfitting, Chris Gabb, has celebrated his retirement by picking up an award recognising his outstanding contribution to the shopfitting industry.

Chris's achievement in the National Association of Shopfitters (NAS) Design Partnership Awards 2017 has rounded off a long and distinguished career with Barnwood that began in 1971.

During that time he supported more than 90 apprentices, many of whom are still in the business today and have gone on to senior positions. This is testament to the importance of the trade apprenticeship and the support it is given by the leadership in the business.

After an apprenticeship with a local joinery company, Gloucester-born Chris joined a national building company, who were undertaking a major redevelopment project in the city, giving him valuable site experience.

After joining Barnwood, he assisted in all aspects of the high quality bespoke bank and building society fit-outs, taking part in all aspects of the operation from estimating to site management.

He took over control of the joinery business after former director, Bert Davies, retired, developing and widening the scope of works into the retail area and complete fit-out works.

Chris's input, initiative and forward thinking developed the company to become a major part of the Barnwood Group, resulting in Barnwood Shopfitting being established within the group.

During Chris's stewardship of the company, he has led controlled expansion of the business to become a major successful player in the shopfitting sector, currently turning over more than £25 million per year, with an enviable list of blue chip customers.

But it's not all about personal successes. Chris's down to earth and practical approach has developed a culture within the business of helping customers and staff, which continues today.

He worked closely to understand the clients' needs and shaped the business to support these, regularly making the impossible possible. Helping others has been important to Chris and he has always been a strong advocate of the trade apprenticeship.

Barnwood Shopfitting joined the NAS in 1974, and have been long-standing members and supporters, with Chris being elected to the council of the NAS on 7th February 2001. Since then Chris has served the association in many roles, most latterly as treasurer, before his retirement from the NAS last year.

Barnwood Group is one of Gloucestershire's longest established companies, employing more than 230 staff with a turnover of £90 million. The group includes three divisions: Construction, Shopfitting and General Works, and is responsible for such prestigious projects as the new John Lewis store at Terminal 2 and the Perfectionists Café-a restaurant created by celebrity chef Heston Blumenthal for air travellers.

Barnwood Shopfitting Ltd is based at 203 Barnwood Road in Gloucester. For any construction enquiries call them on 01452 614124, email mail@barnwoodshopfitting.com or visit their website at: www.barnwoodshopfitting.com

Pictured: left to right, former managing director of Barnwood Shopfitting Chris Gabb, with Robert Hudson, director of NAS.

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