Innovation is key to Norfolk locker firm’s success

Ashley Morrison's business Lockertek has been so successful he's now moving out of the family home a

Ashley Morrison's business Lockertek has been so successful he's now moving out of the family home and into new premises at Manor Farm in Bridgham. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016

A family business which started with a seed fund of £200 is moving to new premises in order to expand its operation.

Lockertek's range of primary school lockers.

Lockertek's range of primary school lockers. - Credit: Archant

Locker manufacturer Lockertek is currently run from the home of owners Ashley and Kerry Morrison in Old Buckenham, but later this month they will move to new office space in Bridgham, near Snetterton.

The firm, which was established in 2008 by the husband and wife team, was set up after Mr Ashley was made redundant on the day of his daughter's birth.

Now with clients as diverse as River Island, the NHS, Banham Zoo, Cambridge University and scores of primary and secondary schools the firm's latest turnover figures, to end of March 2014, topped £800,000.

Mr Morrison, 41, said: 'The move will allow us to expand our operation. Next month we will be taking on an intern to help with the business and within the next three to six months we hope to take on another member of staff.

'When I was made redundant I couldn't do an awful lot about so I decided to start up my own business.'

Mr Morrison invested £200 in a drill and started doing locker repairs before offering the firm's full range of new lockers, locker parts and locker servicing.

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'My first order was for about £4 for two keys. Three or four times in the first year we were a week away from being bankrupt and an order would come in. Then it started to steam roll and get a good reputation,' added Mr Morrison.

Now the firm are exporting to countries as diverse as the United States, Seychelles and Ireland and are supplying lockers for film and TV sets including Dr Who and the X Factor. Their biggest growth area is in primary school lockers - the firm has developed a bespoke range suited to Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 students, allowing schools to consolidate corridor space.

With an estimated 20 million lockers in circulation in the UK, Mr Morrison put Lockertek's success down to its innovative approach.

'My ethos has always been to try something new so we've always tried to develop new products and new ideas for lockers,' he said.

The firm is one of a number of growing businesses supported and assisted by the New Anglia LEP Growth Hub.