Horncastle company packs a punch with experience!

EMPLOYEES at a company in Horncastle are proving it’s never too late to take up an apprenticeship.

Fifteen workers at Forum Packaging are about to embark on a one-year apprenticeship course even though they have nearly 130 years of experience between them.

Three of the employees – Steve Bark, Paul Houlson Davies and Phil Lawrence have each completed 25 years’ service or more at Forum’s Mareham Road manufacturing base. But the team at the packaging and printing company are so committed to continual learning that they are about to embark on a one year Apprenticeship Course in Improving Operational Performance Level 2.

The training, provided by Doncaster-based DC Training and Development Services Ltd, includes:
• Effective team working
• Handling, checking and transferring materials
• Complying with statutory regulations
• Various manufacturing skills and operations
• Carrying out and recording inspections to check the quality of materials

“It’s ridiculous to think that we don’t need to continually update our skills and you should never just stop learning and developing,” said Phil, from Horncastle.

“The whole company is committed to providing the best products and services to our customers and that means the whole team here needs to be highly skilled and working together. Striving to improve the way you do things is essential, however many years’ experience you have. I’m confident the lads will enjoy learning new skills.”

Forum Packaging, which has a turnover of £9 million and employs 73 people, prints and converts more than 60 million sacks and bags every year.

The manufacture of paper bags started at Forum’s Mareham Road base more than 50 years ago when the original business was
founded by the Cornish family – the owners of the Linpac group. The business was the subject of a management buy-out in 2011 when current managing director, Mark Spivey and finance director, Rob Massey, bought the company from DS Smith.

Since then more than £1million has been invested in the company, including the recent development of a £230,000 solar farm at its site. The 900 solar panels will generate estimated income and savings of more than £40,000 each year with more than £1 million in savings and income will be generated by the ground-mounted panels over their lifetime.

“Forum is an established business with a long tradition but we are determined to continually look to the future and develop our technology and our staff,” said Mark Spivey. “The apprenticeship course is just one example of that and we are proud of the team for their commitment and determination to help the company develop and grow.”


" We are proud of our team at Forum Packaging for their commitment and determination to help the company develop and grow. "

Jo Topley - HR Manager

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