Tripp Batt owner Con Mech Group acquires Bury St Edmunds-based Marlows

Members of the senior management teams from Con Mech and Marlows, from left, James Dilley (Con Mech)

Members of the senior management teams from Con Mech and Marlows, from left, James Dilley (Con Mech), Nick Ellis (Marlows), Howard Dilley (Con Mech), Sarah Williams (Marlows), Derek Neil (Con Mech). - Credit: Archant

Independent home and garden centre Marlows, based in Bury St Edmunds, has been acquired for an undisclosed sum by the company behind the Tripp Batt country store in Stanton.

The Con Mech Group, which is based in Darlington, County Durham, and also owns a range of engineering business, has owned Tripp Batt since 1988.

It plans to retain the Marlows name and to continue running the business in its present form, with all employees trasnferring to the new ownership.

Group chairman Howard Dilley said: “We intend to keep the same product range as we have today and to increase the area that we allocate to mowers and garden machinery. Tripp Batt has become known as a specialist in this field and we will be building on that expertise here.”

He added: “We look forward to working with the current team and developing the business. We have a number of ideas we are going to try out in time but our first job is to reassure our customers that the business is carrying on as before.”

The Underwood family, who formerly owned the business, said in a statement that they were selling due to “advancing years”.

They added: “We would like to thank our customers and staff for their loyalty over recent years which has been much appreciated. We wish the business every success in the future.”

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Marlows was advised on the sale by law firm Ashton KCJ. Geoff Hazlewood, a partner and head of the firm’s corporate and commercial team, led the commercial transaction with fellow partner Simon Cunningham leading on the related property sale. Solicitor Abi Adams advised on the employment aspects.

Michael Underwood, director, said; “We felt the time was right to sell the business due to advancing years. Our customers and staff have been very loyal to Marlows over the years and we are very grateful for that. We wish the business every success in the future.”

He added: “The team at Ashton KCJ led by Geoff Hazlewood and Simon Cunningham were a pleasure to work with. They were always available to answer any of our questions and shepherd the deal through to a successful completion.”

Geoff Hazlewood added: “It has been a pleasure advising Michael on this transaction. The acquisition really compliments the existing Con Mech Group portfolio and I am sure Marlows customers will see little difference at the centre.”