Penny Hydraulics Help Community Food Business to Grow During Covid-19 Pandemic

7th October 2020

Regather, in Sheffield is a not for profit, community food business which aim to create value-based food chains. Established for over a decade, the locally sourced fruit and veg box section of the business has doubled in size during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

The Brief

As demand for the fruit and veg boxes grew – space became a premium. Initially, a marquee was put up to extend space outside the building, but this was not a suitable long term solution.

"It came to a point where we either needed to move premises or look for other solutions to reconfigure the building" says Gareth Roberts founder of Regather. "Due to the pandemic moving the business was not a viable option. After much consideration, we decided to repurpose the event space upstairs into another working area. The problem then was getting the 600 – 700kg of produce safely between floors."

The Challenge

Regather only had a very small area for a goods lift to be installed due to the main entrance and a staircase. Goods Lift Design Engineer Umar Lodhi was up to the task and created a MezzLift design that not only fits the space but does not block the entrance to the building when the doors were open. "Special thanks to Umar Lodhi, the designer who worked with us to make the lift fit within our restrictive space," says Gareth.

Another challenge faced by both Regather and Penny Hydraulics was the installation of goods lift during the pandemic. Social distancing was adhered to and the lift was able to be installed on-time with little disruption. 

The Solution

The MezzLight goods lift can safely move up to 250kg of goods between floors, providing Regather with the flexibility to reconfigure their workspace. This has helped the business to grow in line with the increased demand, without the need for downtime or the huge expense of moving. ‘I actually did some the prep work myself – within a week the lift was in and up and running, it has really helped to transform the business’ says Gareth.

"From the initial enquiry to on-site construction through to training and handover, the service from Penny Hydraulics was fantastic. Special thanks to Umar Lodhi for his advice and design expertise, the build team for their respect of social distancing measures at this challenging time and especially the Directors for personally supporting a local, not-for-profit social enterprise. I would strongly recommend Penny Hydraulics any time."

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