Heathcoat Fabrics awarded NDMA Manufacturer of the Year 2023

Designing and developing fabrics for parachutes used by NASA during their programme of interplanetary exploration is just one of the reasons why Heathcoat Fabrics has been named Manufacturer of the Year 2023.

The company received their award at the North Devon Manufacturer’s Association (NDMA) awards held at The Barnstaple Hotel, earlier this month. As the leading supplier of engineered technical textile solutions, the company was recognised for its innovation.

Jayne Marsh-Jones, HR Manager said “We are thrilled to have been given this wonderful accolade that recognises the incredible work of all our employees here at Heathcoat Fabrics. This award recognises the innovation, skill and capability we have here at our site in Tiverton where we design, develop and deliver a wide variety of technical textiles to many of the world’s leading companies.

In 2022, we received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Innovation for the design and production of parachute fabric which was successfully used for NASA’s Mars Perseverance mission. This further recognition is incredible and acknowledges the work we do with industries including Aerospace, Automotive, Defence, Firefighter Protection, MRG and Healthcare.

The glass trophy, which was collected by Mark Drysdale, Commercial Manager, Woven Fabrics, also recognised the company’s commitment to sustainability.

“In driving our business forward, we are committed to environmental sustainability and responsible manufacturing”, Mark adds. “Our primary objective is to achieve zero waste to landfill, a goal we are actively pursuing through site-wide processes aimed at waste elimination. 75% of the electricity used in our textile manufacturing comes from on-site generation through our combined heat and power plant, as well as solar and hydro schemes. Company growth allows for further capital investment to ensure energy efficient cutting edge equipment continues to be used for future production.”

Heathcoat Fabrics has been producing fabric in Tiverton since 1816 and currently employs 490 members of staff. They recently celebrated the first graduates of their new internal employee leadership training programme. This training offers opportunities for staff across the business to develop leadership and mentoring skills.

Earlier this year the company rewarded staff for all their hard work with a 9% pay rise to help with the cost of living crisis and delivered a bonus to each employee worth 6.4% of their annual earnings.