Manufacturer leaves town after 80 years

Staff at the new A P Burt headquarters

Staff at the new A P Burt headquarters - Credit: supplied

One of Portishead’s longest running businesses has closed the doors on its base of 80 years.

A P Burt, one of the UK’s biggest paper bag manufacturers, has relocated from its premises in Harbour Road, in a move that bosses say will ensure the jobs of 65 local employees.

AP Burt supplies seven million bags each day to some of Britain’s best-known supermarkets and fast food retailers ranging from Gregg’s and KFC to Waitrose and Morrisons. The company has prospered in recent years thanks to a move away from plastic bags and the continued growth in ‘food to go’ packaging.

James Nicholls, AP Burt’s managing director, said: “After 80 years at Harbour Road we considered it the right time to undertake relocation and allow redevelopment of the existing site. It will help protect jobs and put the firm in a strong position to enjoy future growth.”

The company is now fully operational in a 52,000 sqft property in First Avenue, Portbury.

Mr Nicholls added: “We appointed Malcolm Gunter at Williams Gunter Hardwick to negotiate the sale and identify the relocation property. We are delighted with the dual outcome and can now look forward to the future at our new premises.”

Mr Gunter said: “The timing of the decision to relocate coincided with an upturn in market conditions, particularly for the residential sector, which clearly worked in our favour.

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“However the chronic shortage of available warehouse and production accommodation within North Somerset did not make the task of identifying a suitable relocation property straightforward. We are therefore delighted that A P Burt has been able to complete its move and remain a significant North Somerset employer.”