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Doughty celebrates half a century in business
What do supermodels Naomi Campbell and Claudia Schiffer have in common with Doughty Engineering? Aside from the dazzling style and envious curves (of the Doughty clamp range), it’s that all three celebrate their 50th birthdays this year.
Doughty Engineering first registered as Doughty Trailer Sales Ltd in February 1970 and spent the first ten years of trading manufacturing trailers, before metamorphosing into the Doughty Engineering that is held in such high esteem by the entertainment industry today.
Julian Chiverton, sales director commented: “We are extremely proud to be celebrating half a century in business. When Russell Doughty, Mervyn Lister and my father George Chiverton started out in 1970, little did they know that the Doughty brand would become synonymous with clamps and other kit relied upon by riggers and lighting designers across the world. Their business was trailers, then designing and manufacturing attachments for rough terrain and forklift trucks in the farming and construction sectors. But by the mid-eighties it was clear that to survive the impending recession, they’d need to diversify even further.”
The Doughty that we know and love today could be regarded as a happy coincidence. “A local theatrical supply company, AJS Theatrical Supplies, asked us to manufacture some bracketry. We were asked to quote on the manufacture of 500 hook clamps. The company’s owner, Adrian Sant was so pleased with the quote and the quality, this quickly led on to orders for boom arms, safety chains, etc and the rest, as they say, is history,” explained Julian.
Over the decades Doughty has gone on to produce more than 1,000 different items for clients across the world with many of their now standard stock items starting life as bespoke designs for specific customers. Mark Chorley, design engineer added: “The reason we do what we do is to create items that our customers want, and this is something that we have always focussed on. At every trade show we visit, we ask for feedback, for ideas, asking “What item would you like to see in your wish list toolkit?” When we create one-offs for customers, we look at how that item might make life quicker, easier and safer for our customers and often end up making it one of our standard pieces of kit. No company can expect to be successful or to enjoy growth if they’re not willing to listen to their customers; their needs are at the forefront of everything we do.”
Doughty is set to mark its half century with a party later this month for all its employees and their families. “These are the people that make Doughty the success that it is. From the skills of operating our machinery, to the great customer service skills of our desk teams and the innovation of our R&D team in fact, everyone has a vital role and we want to extend our gratitude to them all. Here’s to the next 50 years,” said Julian.
In picture: Russell Doughty and George Chiverton
28th February 2020
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