Mower supplier hopes for snow after significant investment

South Norfolk garden machine supplier MowDirect is banking on a white Christmas after announcing a 'significant' investment in snowblowers in anticipation of another winter of adverse weather.

The last two years has seen Norfolk and Suffolk gripped by snow and freezing temperatures which has caused a host of problems from pot holes to school closures.

With long-range forecasters predicting this will be the worst in a succession of four bad winters, the firm, based in Morningthorpe, near Long Stratton, hopes to capitalise on forecasts of more arctic weather, while also branching out from its traditional lawnmowing and garden machinery sales business.

Managing partner Rob Fagg said the company, which has an annual turnover of around �4m, had pre-ordered a range of snow blowers designed to clear snow from both domestic and industrial premises.

But he remained tight-lipped about the exact number of machines in stock. The firm, which does 95pc of its business online, and employs eight people, will also be launching a new website for the snowblowers.

'The last few winters have been quite cold and there has been a fair bit of snow to what we've had five or 10 years ago,' Mr Fagg said. 'We've noticed and probably everyone has noticed the havoc it is has caused to individuals and businesses not being able to function properly.

'We are a seasonal business and the majority of business is done during the spring and summer months on the lawnmower side of things,' he added.

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He said that as the firm's warehouses had less lawnmowers towards the end of the summer, there was room for the snowblowers.

'We are quite active online and thought we would put a few models on the site and having done that we found ourselves receiving quite a lot of enquiries from up and down the country,' he said.

'We were getting enquiries from everywhere from Scotland, north Wales and the south coast.'

Last year, the firm was unable to provide the snow blowers because there was no immediate supply, so Mr Fagg said they had to make the decision to preorder the snowblowers this time around.

'They make them in the summer months,' he said. 'What we found from last year's experience is that unless you get your order in, you are unlikely to get any. We had lots of people phoning up to place orders, but we could not fulfil them.'

The snowblowers are designed by US firm MTD and Swedish firm Stign and are manufactured in the far east and north America.