Abbott Wade

Highlighting best practice as a representative in The Parliamentary Review

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Abbott Wade is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

www.abbottwade.co.uk

THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
36 | ABBOTT WADE
Directors and Founders Craig
Abbott and Michael Wade
We design, supply and
install custom-made pre-
finished staircases
Providing a service that encompasses the design, supply and
installation of custom-made pre-finished staircases, Abbott-
Wade occupy a niche in their market. As a family business
established 23 years ago, they have achieved remarkable
growth, with their annual turnover increasing by 90 per cent
over the last four years. Directors Craig Abbott and Michael
Wade gained experience working in joinery prior to establishing
the business and discuss the breadth of their service and the
accountability that comes with being a small company.
When we first began our joinery careers, little did we know that we would be
the pioneers of a home improvement industry. After starting out with some help
from The Prince’s Trust, we identified a niche market for the design, supply and
installation of bespoke pre-finished staircase renovations and new flights and
developed the methods and techniques that have become the industry standard.
Twenty-three years on, our multi-award-winning family business has been
recognised for outstanding service, product and design. We have built a formidable
reputation, installing 400 staircase renovations and new flights nationwide each
year from our Cheshire base. We are thriving where larger companies have tried and
failed, with an annual turnover increasing by 90 per cent over the last fouryears.
We are as unique as our staircases
The industry has become increasingly competitive, and we stand out by being
as unique as our staircases. For such an integral part of our homes, they are
often overlooked and undervalued. Homeowners may invest in new kitchens or
FACTS ABOUT
ABBOTT WADE
»Directors and Founders: Craig
Abbott and Michael Wade
»Founded in 1996
»Based in Warrington, Cheshire
»Services: Design, installation
and renovation of besp oke,
pre-finished staircases
»No. of employees: 20, plus 8
designers
»In July 2019, Abbott Wade
were awarded the National
Champion award at the
National Family Business
Awards
Abbott Wade
37ABBOTT WADE |
CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING
bathrooms, but they usually resign
themselves to a mere lick of paint to
freshen up their stairs.
Considering that a staircase is often
the first thing to be seen when
opening your front door, it makes a big
statement about the property and its
inhabitants. It should make a positive
and powerful first impression. It is a
functional and aesthetic transition
between floors, with the capacity to
reinvent the whole home. For example,
a staircase with glass balustrades
floods the hall, stairs and landing with
light, making the space feel bigger
andbrighter.
Whether in a Surrey mansion or a local
St Helens terrace, we believe that,
regardless of size, a good staircase
should excel in both function and
form, creating a central focal point
while remaining in keeping with the
character of the property. We have
developed an ever-increasing product
range using a variety of premium
hardwoods with custom colours and
stains and a selection of glass and
steel options. Pair this with other
bespoke items, like feature steps,
curves and flourishes in almost infinite
combinations, and a unique staircase
is never far away. Our goal is to
keep each installation as stress free
as possible by managing the whole
project, using pre-finished staircase
components. This eliminates the need
for further painting or decoration,
and we complete most installations in
under 48 hours. We even take away
the existing staircase components to
be recycled.
We are one of the few companies
to provide a complete new staircase
or renovation service. Our staircases
are fitted to the exact specifications
dictated by the client and the
requirements of their home. Standard
refurbishments involve removing
and replacing structural newel posts,
rails and balustrades with new
hardwood, glass and steel components
and cladding over other structural
components, giving the illusion of a
complete new staircase.
New staircases of all shapes and
sizes are installed where existing
flights are becoming unsafe or need
a significant redesign, adding turns
or even changing the direction of the
flight altogether. New staircases are
designed using 3D computer models
to create the optimal layout for the
available space. Helical staircases
also require a digital 3D survey to
ensure the curve fits perfectly into the
stairwell. This process ensures that all
staircases are compliant with current
UK building regulations.
Staying competitive as a small
family business
Abbott-Wade is not a faceless
corporate name to hide behind. It
represents two individuals at the
core of our business, which increases We use a range of
premium materials and
finishings
A good
staircase
should excel in
both function
and form
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2019
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
36 | ABBOTT WADE
Directors and Founders Craig
Abbott and Michael Wade
We design, supply and
install custom-made pre-
finished staircases
Providing a service that encompasses the design, supply and
installation of custom-made pre-finished staircases, Abbott-
Wade occupy a niche in their market. As a family business
established 23 years ago, they have achieved remarkable
growth, with their annual turnover increasing by 90 per cent
over the last four years. Directors Craig Abbott and Michael
Wade gained experience working in joinery prior to establishing
the business and discuss the breadth of their service and the
accountability that comes with being a small company.
When we first began our joinery careers, little did we know that we would be
the pioneers of a home improvement industry. After starting out with some help
from The Prince’s Trust, we identified a niche market for the design, supply and
installation of bespoke pre-finished staircase renovations and new flights and
developed the methods and techniques that have become the industry standard.
Twenty-three years on, our multi-award-winning family business has been
recognised for outstanding service, product and design. We have built a formidable
reputation, installing 400 staircase renovations and new flights nationwide each
year from our Cheshire base. We are thriving where larger companies have tried and
failed, with an annual turnover increasing by 90 per cent over the last fouryears.
We are as unique as our staircases
The industry has become increasingly competitive, and we stand out by being
as unique as our staircases. For such an integral part of our homes, they are
often overlooked and undervalued. Homeowners may invest in new kitchens or
FACTS ABOUT
ABBOTT WADE
»Directors and Founders: Craig
Abbott and Michael Wade
»Founded in 1996
»Based in Warrington, Cheshire
»Services: Design, installation
and renovation of besp oke,
pre-finished staircases
»No. of employees: 20, plus 8
designers
»In July 2019, Abbott Wade
were awarded the National
Champion award at the
National Family Business
Awards
Abbott Wade
37ABBOTT WADE |
CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING
bathrooms, but they usually resign
themselves to a mere lick of paint to
freshen up their stairs.
Considering that a staircase is often
the first thing to be seen when
opening your front door, it makes a big
statement about the property and its
inhabitants. It should make a positive
and powerful first impression. It is a
functional and aesthetic transition
between floors, with the capacity to
reinvent the whole home. For example,
a staircase with glass balustrades
floods the hall, stairs and landing with
light, making the space feel bigger
andbrighter.
Whether in a Surrey mansion or a local
St Helens terrace, we believe that,
regardless of size, a good staircase
should excel in both function and
form, creating a central focal point
while remaining in keeping with the
character of the property. We have
developed an ever-increasing product
range using a variety of premium
hardwoods with custom colours and
stains and a selection of glass and
steel options. Pair this with other
bespoke items, like feature steps,
curves and flourishes in almost infinite
combinations, and a unique staircase
is never far away. Our goal is to
keep each installation as stress free
as possible by managing the whole
project, using pre-finished staircase
components. This eliminates the need
for further painting or decoration,
and we complete most installations in
under 48 hours. We even take away
the existing staircase components to
be recycled.
We are one of the few companies
to provide a complete new staircase
or renovation service. Our staircases
are fitted to the exact specifications
dictated by the client and the
requirements of their home. Standard
refurbishments involve removing
and replacing structural newel posts,
rails and balustrades with new
hardwood, glass and steel components
and cladding over other structural
components, giving the illusion of a
complete new staircase.
New staircases of all shapes and
sizes are installed where existing
flights are becoming unsafe or need
a significant redesign, adding turns
or even changing the direction of the
flight altogether. New staircases are
designed using 3D computer models
to create the optimal layout for the
available space. Helical staircases
also require a digital 3D survey to
ensure the curve fits perfectly into the
stairwell. This process ensures that all
staircases are compliant with current
UK building regulations.
Staying competitive as a small
family business
Abbott-Wade is not a faceless
corporate name to hide behind. It
represents two individuals at the
core of our business, which increases We use a range of
premium materials and
finishings
A good
staircase
should excel in
both function
and form
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
38 | ABBOTT WADE
customer confidence. We are not
accountable to shareholders who may
compromise our integrity, unrivalled
reputation and high standards in
pursuit of profits.
With employees spanning three
generations, we have remained a
proud family-run business since our
inception. We trust and support
one another, working for the same
goal while maintaining our collective
reputation. We’re proud of our
roots and support our community
by employing local craftspeople. We
employ our fitters with good wages
instead of subcontracting, providing a
career rather than a job. This improves
staff retention and attracts fully trained
staff from competitors.
Our traditional values are prized by our
customers, who want the best product
and price from a company they trust.
We’re honest with our customers,
ensuring they make informed decisions
about our materials, our designs and
the installation process so there are no
unexpected surprises.
Running a small business brings many
challenges: limited resources, reduced
buying power and reliance on third-
party services for accountancy or advice
on new legislation like GDPR and
work-based pensions. We have fewer
resources for research and development,
although R&D tax credits have helped to
keep us at the forefront of our industry.
A small business requires team members
to be adaptable, enabling them to see
the broader picture. This also allows
our systems, procedures and services to
be more flexible to adapt to changes in
customer demand and the economy.
As we’ve grown, we have become
increasingly self-reliant by investing in
our infrastructure, adding a purpose-
built office, spray shop and workshop
to our premises. This allows us to offer
flexibility that cannot be matched by
our competitors, large or small.
Remaining self-reliant and
adaptable
The prices of imported consumables
and raw materials are likely to change
as a consequence of Brexit, as are the
buying habits of our clients. It remains
to be seen whether they tighten their
purse strings or increasingly “buy
British” and invest in their homes
instead of spending money on foreign
holidays and imported cars.
Our growth and success are not a tale
of outside investors and management
consultants but rather one of hard
work, expertise and sustainable
growth. By remaining adaptable,
becoming increasingly self-reliant and
providing a specialist high-quality
product, we will remain a family
business at the forefront of staircase
design. Under the ownership of the
next generation of the Abbott-Wade
families, we will continue with the
same customer-focused approach and
the values of honesty and hard work
that have served our business so well.
Our traditional
values are
prized by our
customers,
who want the
best product
and price from
a company
they trust
We install around 400
renovations or new
flights every year
39MCGURK ARCHITECTS |
CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING
Practice Principal Colm McGurk
Raidió Fáilte/Líonra Uladh
Founded in November 1993, McGurk Architects prides
itself on the delivery of innovative buildings. Based in
Magherafelt, County Derry, the award-winning architectural
consultancy specialises in community, healthcare and social
housing constructions that promote a shared future in the
UK and beyond. It has a wealth of project experience in these
sectors as well as commercial, leisure and residential work.
The practice works actively with all its clients, consultants and
contractors to ensure that a continuous dialogue is created
from conception to completion, resulting in high-quality design
that meets client needs and budgets, which is evidenced by
their recently completed works. Practice Principal Colm McGurk
explains more.
In West Belfast, even the architecture is often a political statement. The collapse
of the Northern Ireland Executive happened on January 9, 2017, four days before
the contract start of Raidío Fáilte’s signature Irish-medium broadcasting, sound
recording and media training facility. This was a strange coincidence as funding
cuts to Irish language services, same-sex marriage rights and the Renewable
Heat Incentive scandal were widely acknowledged as the central elements which
triggered Martin McGuinness’ resignation as deputy first minister just as the project
entitled Ulster Network was breaking ground. Ironically, at that stage £1.4 million
had been committed by Belfast City Council, the Department for Communities
and An Ciste Infheistíochta Gaeilge, which is an £8 million capital fund for Irish-
language projects secured by Sinn Féin at the Hillsborough talks.
FACTS ABOUT
MCGURK ARCHITECTS
»Practice Principal: Colm McGurk
»Founded in 1993
»Based in Magherafelt, Mid
Ulster, Northern Ireland
»Services: Chartered architectural
practice
»No. of employee s: 10
»www.mcgurk-architects.com
McGurk Architects

www.abbottwade.co.uk

This article was sponsored by Abbott Wade. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it.