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iNet facilitates Pariamentary support for Permashutter

A Northamptonshire-based innovative design and manufacture organisation, Permashutter Ltd which has been developing products with the Environment Agency and BT Openreach, has gained support from Michael Ellis MP, Northampton North after contacting the Sustainable Construction innovation Network (iNet) for assistance with its latest product.

The iNet is positioned to assist East Midlands SMEs in developing their construction products and services through to commerciality and has announced that Permashutter is the ideal company to apply for innovation support. SMEs are encouraged to contact the iNet for support worth up to £10,000 together with access to a network of contacts within the sustainable construction industry.

As part of their support package, the iNet hosted a meeting between Michael Ellis MP and Permashutter, giving Steve Willis and Neil Hadler, directors with Permashutter, the opportunity to gain backing from a local MP. Having impressed Michael Ellis MP with their innovative and low carbon products, the company is due to pitch to representatives from The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and Communities and Local Government (CLG) to gain national recognition for their services.

Permashutter has developed a polymer headwall as a quick and cost effective alternative to casting headwalls in situ. The Permashutter polymer headwall is lightweight, highly durable and is designed to be installed and then filled with concrete on site within three hours. Due to demand from The Environment Agency and civil engineering contractors, a range of polymer headwall models is now being developed and will be available in the next few months. Permashutter is also developing other civil engineering and permanent formwork products such as retaining walls and foundations on behalf of clients such as BT Openreach.

Gillian Ward-Stokes, innovation advisor, iNet said: "Permashutter is currently midway through the application process for innovation support but we are certain their products will be a success. They are just the sort of organisation the iNet is in place to assist; creative, dynamic and producing low carbon products. We will be working closely with Steve and his team to create new jobs in the area and help them grow as a business."

Michael Ellis MP, Northampton North added: "SMEs are the backbone of the construction industry and a vital tool in the economy for creating jobs in our town. Organisations such as the iNet are integral to the ongoing innovation in the East Midlands, and Permashutter is a shining example of innovation in this region."

Steve Willis, technical director, Permashutter commented: "We are so pleased to have met with Michael Ellis MP regarding our current products and future developments and are excited for the opportunities presented. The iNet has been extremely supportive and we are confident that once our application is approved, we can utilise their expertise to develop our products and continue the company’s growth."

The Sustainable Construction iNet is funded by East Midlands Development Agency (emda) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and has helped more than 55 businesses in the East Midlands with targeted funding support. As well as securing finance for East Midlands SMEs, the iNet also has a network of business advisors and educational institutions which offers advice and guidance on projects for the sustainable construction sector.

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