Five firms in Suffolk and north Essex celebrate Queen’s Awards for Enterprise

Polmil temporary security fencing produced by Braintree-based Blok N Mesh, which has received a Quee

Polmil temporary security fencing produced by Braintree-based Blok N Mesh, which has received a Queen's Award for Enterprise. - Credit: Archant

Five businesses in Suffolk and north Essex are among nearly 250 firms from across the UK which are named today as winners this year’s Queen’s Awards for Enterprise.

Richard Vass of Burland Technology Solutions.

Richard Vass of Burland Technology Solutions.

The awards, announced each year to coincide with HM the Queen’s birthday, recognise achievements by companies in the areas of innovation, international trade and sustainable development, with individuals also eligible for recognition for enterprise promotion.

Among the firms recognised this year for innovation are Braintree-based Blok N Mesh UK and Contamac, from Saffrom Walden.

Awards for international trade go to Burland Technology Solutions from Great Blakenham, near Ipswich, and ProSynth, based at Acton, near Sudbury.

And Anglia Print, from Beccles, receives an award for sustainable development.

John Popely of Anglia Print.

John Popely of Anglia Print. - Credit: Archant


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Blok N Mesh UK, which has a workforce of 143, receives its innovation award for the the Polmil range of temporary securing fencing.

It involves steel panels mounted on weighted blocks so that fencing can be installed flexibly, including on sloping and uneven ground.

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Around 25 kilometres of Polmil fencing was used at 28 different sites at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Contamac, which employs 70 people and previously won a Queen’s Award in 2012 for international trade, is recognised in the innovation category this year for its development of new materials for hydrogel contact lenses.

The Definitive range of silicone-based materials has been developed to allow made-to-measure hydrogel contact lens to be manufactured using lathe cutting techniques.

Standard silicone hydrogel materials are too expensive for lathe cutting and require a surface treatment that is only economical at large volumes.

Burland Technology Solutions, which employs six people, produces industry-leading electrical distribution boxes and power units.

Since its launch in 2008, it has built up an export trade to 17 countries, including the United States, Taiwan, India and China, with the successful patenting of two of its unique products assisting growth in the Far East.

Its award for international trade recognises a 114% increase in overseas sales over the past three years, with exports now accounting for 43% of its total turnover.

ProSynth, which has a workforce of 19, produces chemical “intermediates” for use in research and development, particularly in the pharmaceutical industry.

A strategy of developing products of greater complexity helped the business to survive a global recession in R&D in 2013 and its international sales have grown by more than 90% in the last three years, now accounting for more than 60% of of the company’s turnover.

Anglia Print, which employs five people, receives an award for sustainable development in recognition of its wide-ranging approach to minimising its environmental impacts, which has seen it eliminate the use of hazardous substances and water in production.

Besides having invested in waterless printing presses and using non-soya vegetable oil-based inks, the business is powered by 100% renewable energy, has adopted a zero waste to landfil policy, is certified as carbon neutral and sources materials from ethically and environmentally certified sources.

Nationally, a total of 243 businesses are recognised in this year’s Queen’s Awards, including 33 in the East of England.

“The Queen’s Awards are a great way of celebrating the best of British business,” said Businesses Secretary Sajid Javid.

“We are a country full of exciting and innovative businesses that deserve to be celebrated. I’d like to commend all the winners for their hard work in creating jobs for people and driving our growing economy.”

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