NewSpace Containers Ltd is a market leading manufacturer of portable accommodation and modular buildings, with 150 employees operating from a 50,585m2 facility on a 15 acre site in Lydney, Gloucestershire.

The company’s bespoke steel containers are used for a wide range of applications including site accommodation units, offices, canteens, toilet units, changing rooms, shops, temporary and residential housing, helping clients across the UK reduce their running costs and carbon footprint.

On site, NewSpace’s end-to-end manufacturing process incorporates in-house pressing, bending, forming and welding to form the structural models to the highest engineering and quality standards. Products are painted using the newest Paint systems, and all internal fixtures are installed on the company’s unique flow line process which employs the latest manufacturing techniques to provide a quality internal environment for each unit.

The challenge

NewSpace wanted to replace its entire ageing forklift fleet, updating to the latest equipment to provide operators with a range of comfortable, reliable and efficient machines that drive productivity with maximum uptime.

The mixed forklift fleet of 12 vehicles from 3T to 16T, is an integral part of the fast-paced production process, with machines working long hours each day, lifting, stacking and moving heavy loads around the factory.  It is a demanding environment for the forklifts, working 40 hours a week, operating on uneven ground outside and moving components into diverse buildings to support the fabrication process, including the large steel boxes which range from 10ft to 40ft in length. Throughout the site, space is at a premium, so manoeuvrability is essential.

The solution

Newspace ran a competitive tender process to fulfil their materials handling requirement, looking at value, service, support, robustness and reputation of the vehicles. Grant Handling had previously worked with NewSpace on the servicing of its existing forklift fleet, and this positive and proven relationship played an important role in the company’s selection for the contract. Previous experience of the robust and versatile Heli range of forklifts and warehouse equipment was also a key purchasing factor. 

Following a full materials handling audit, Grant Handling worked closely with NewSpace to ensure all new equipment was specified and configured to meet their exacting requirements. 

The Equipment

Heli forklifts are used throughout the business, with 12 new Heli forklift trucks in operation at the site.

The fleet includes the UK’s first two Heli FD160G 16T diesel powered counterbalance forklift trucks. Equipped with extended 3200mm forks and fork positioner with side shift, the forklifts safely and efficiently handle the heavy, bulky containers, lifting on and off the production line, and once fully furbished, loading onto trucks for onward transportation to customers. Manoeuvrability with control is essential for NewSpace, and the Heli 16T trucks are equipped with hydrostatic power steering with load sensing, while the tight turning circle ensures easy operation in confined spaces. Its fuel efficient engine provides versatile performance under high torque and fast response at low speeds.  The triple mast delivers a lifting height to 5500mm with high strength lifting system, and the high-mounted cab ensures good all-round visibility and lower noise for improved work safety and efficiency.

Inside the Heli 16T, the ergonomically designed cab is a comfortable and convenient working environment, with air conditioning, adjustable steering wheel, full suspension seat, integrated console, and easy step up to access. 

Both 16Ts are joined by two further diesel Heli FD100 10Ts, which operate alongside seven LPG-powered Heli counterbalance forklifts at 3T, 5T and 7T. The highly manoeuvrable smaller trucks supply and support the production teams, bringing in parts and accessories for the fabrication processes.  Driver assistance on all the Heli forklift trucks ensures safer operation and minimises damage. 

The support

When you rely on your forklift to keep your business moving, you need an expert service and maintenance team by your side. Having previously purchased its materials handling assets outright, NewSpace has financed the new forklift trucks on a 5 year contract hire with Grant Handling, which includes all service and maintenance tailored to NewSpace’s needs, for total peace of mind. 

Commenting on the decision to select Grant Handling for its materials handling requirements, Paul Scott, Managing Director at NewSpace, said: “The new Heli forklifts are performing well with excellent availability. The cab is much more operative friendly than our previous models, and feedback from the drivers is positive. Communications with Grant Handling are always straightforward and efficient, and we have been particularly impressed by the local speed of response when required.

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