Last week (21st October), Norbar Torque Tools officially opened the doors to its new 120,000ft2 facility in Banbury. The new space is more than twice the size of the company’s old premises. From the new site, Norbar will continue to produce torque solutions for a variety of global markets, including transportation, petrochemical and energy generation sectors.
Remarking on the number of delegates visiting from Norbar’s international distributor network, Councillor Gordon Ross, Town Mayor of Banbury said: “I don’t think I have ever seen so many people from so many countries in the same place.”
Home to nearly 300 people, the new premises is designed and constructed to provide a positive working environment and benefits from a number of sustainable features. As such, the heating and cooling - designed to maintain the entire factory at constant temperature - is provided by air source heat pumps and ten percent of the electricity consumed throughout the building is generated by solar photovoltaic panels on the roof. Natural light from the large skylights provides a superior working environment and when artificial illumination is required, it is provided by LED panels controlled by lux and motion sensors.
Following a tour of the new facility Conservative MP for North Oxfordshire, Victoria Prentis, said: “It is wonderful to have seen the impressive outcome of significant investment by a local manufacturer, and their continued sales success globally.”
One crucial development within the new facility is a larger calibration laboratory, which operates within strict climatic conditions. The laboratory has been approved for torque measurement between 0.005N·m and 108,500N·m and is accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS), to ensure competence and traceability of measurement.
In fact, Norbar is the only torque equipment manufacturer to be able to offer accredited torque tool and instrument calibration services to the original factory standard across four continents. This is achieved via calibration laboratories in Australia, US, Singapore, China and India each with similar national accreditations.
Commenting on the new laboratory, Neill Brodey, Managing Director at Norbar Torque Tools, said: “Everything that we do in the company relies on the knowledge that our torque standards are correct. The additional space and improved climate control will allow us to continue to develop our calibration capabilities and to further improve the support we provide to our customers.”
“It is fantastic that Norbar Torque Tools has been operating within Banbury for over seventy years. From humble beginnings at North Bar manufacturing torque wrenches during the Second World War, we now ship to every industrial economy. With the Wildmere site, we set out to build the best torque production facility in the world and I truly believe we may have achieved it."