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Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Royal visit to mark launch of LED firm’s new centre

A REVOLUTIONARY new business facility is set to be opened by royal appointment.

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FORGING AHEAD: The Duke of York is due to cut the ribbon at the opening of Forge Europa’s new lighting solutions centre

Ulverston LED firm Forge Europa is set to unveil its new lighting solutions centre on May 30.

And, in the week of the Diamond Jubilee, a special guest is set to declare the headquarters open.

The Duke of York, His Royal Highness Prince Andrew, will cut the ribbon.

The Duke, who promotes business and industry in the UK, will meet the company’s senior team for a business lunch on the day, prior to undertaking the formal opening.

Peter Barton, who runs Forge Europa with his wife Julie, said the visit will be the perfect way to mark the opening.

He told the Evening Mail: “It is going to be wonderful, we are really looking forward to it.

“We heard that it may be happening a few weeks ago, probably going back to the beginning of April.

“But then we had to have the Duke’s secretary and security people come here and so forth.

“The checks were quite rigorous and it has taken a little while for everything to become official.”

Mr Barton said the Duke’s interest in technology and business innovation was one of the main reasons the Duke has chosen to visit the firm.

He said: “One of the main reasons why he is coming is that three years ago we won a Queen’s Award (for outstanding innovation).

“Normally if you win one of these awards then you will get a royal visit. We believe the Duke is coming because he has an interest in business and cutting edge technology.

“Our new building will be completely lit by LEDs. There is not an incandescent or halogen light bulb in sight and this is one of the first buildings in the country to be lit this way.”

Forge Europa, which was founded 19 years ago, manufactures low energy, long-life LED lighting assemblies and bulb replacement products.

The company has opened a new logistics centre at the Crooklands Business Park in Dalton and will now unveil its new office block and research centre close to its headquarters in Princes Street, Ulverston.

It employs 37 people, having created four roles in February.

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