Winners of Family Business of the Year Award, Leeways Packaging Services
Category: Awards

Keeping at the forefront of technology is key for Family Business Winner Leeways Packaging Services


This family business has success all wrapped up! Leeways Packaging Services was crowned the Family Business of the Year at the Gloucestershire Live Business Awards 2019 and they have been busy investing in technology throughout 2020.

Since winning the Family Business award in 2019, Leeways Packaging Services has continued to be very busy investing in the latest technology and equipment to ensure that Leeways continues to be at the forefront of sustainability within the thermoforming industry.

During 2020, Leeways set up another subsidiary company, also based within Gloucestershire, which uses the latest extrusion technology to produce plastic RPET sheet for use by Leeways Packaging Services. The technology that was invested in allows the Leeways group to produce RPET sheet that can be made from 100% post-consumer waste and also remains 100% recyclable itself. This is something that very few companies are able to replicate within in the UK.

In addition to this, Leeways has also worked with suppliers to develop a PP (polypropylene) material that is made from a minimum of 30% recycled content, further helping to improve Leeways’ sustainability credentials.

Leeways has remained busy throughout the pandemic and helped to ensure continuous supply to the food and medical industries.

A reminder of why Leeways won Family Business of the Year in 2019

Key business points:

  • Leeways is a family-owned and run thermoformed plastic packaging manufacturer.
  • Third-generation family business established by Roland Trevor Walding, in 1971, then passed on to Anthony Walding who remains involved as a Non-Executive Director, and is today owned and run by brothers Adam and Lee Walding as Finance Director and Managing Director respectively.
  • Employs circa 135 employees with 130 based across two Gloucestershire sites; head office in Churcham and a second manufacturing plant in Cinderford which opened in 2018.

The winning entry:

Leeways Packaging Services lead the way in design innovation for thermoformed packaging in the food industry. Catering for customers across some of the biggest names in food retail, they have set themselves apart by providing bespoke and sustainable designs.

The plastics industry has been subject to a great deal of international scrutiny and increasingly negative media coverage. Leeways have risen to this challenge and focused on their core values of investing in innovative product design, delivering exceptional customer service and protecting their people, to provide solutions to the current sustainability crisis.

They have installed a solar farm at their head office manufacturing site to provide around 25% of its power requirements, invested in the latest energy efficient machinery and installed LED lighting in all manufacturing and warehousing facilities.

Working in partnership with their customers, they have reduced the use of hard to recycle materials in their products by 50 tonnes per annum, making their packaging 100% recyclable. They have also committed to the use of rPET – recycled polyethylene terephthalate – in a bid to move towards a closed-loop system which uses recycled plastics to create new, recyclable plastic packaging.

Strong leadership coupled with a continued focus on delivering innovative packaging solutions and the improvement of their sustainability credentials has been instrumental in achieving sustained double-digit growth of 29% in the last three years. The company continually reinvests its profits back into the business, aiming to ensure further improvement and growth for years to come.

Nominations for the Gloucestershire Live Business Awards are open and close on Tuesday, June 29. For more details and to enter, see Gloucestershire Live Business Awards website.

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