Doncaster jobs boost from Next sofa factory plan

Next Distribution Warehouse, Lincolnshire Way, Armthorpe. Picture: Marie Caley
Next Distribution Warehouse, Lincolnshire Way, Armthorpe. Picture: Marie Caley

A new sofa factory and warehouse is set to open in Doncaster later this year creating dozens of jobs.

Retail giant Next will open a warehouse facility which will include a sofa manufacturing factory in Armthorpe in August.

It’s very positive that even more jobs are in the pipeline

The new 600,000 sq ft factory will be next to the company’s warehouse on West Moor Lane, which employs more than 500 staff.

Initially, there will be 50 people employed in the sofa manufacturing team, although Next expects this to grow over the next few years as production volumes increase.

The site has been operating for more than a decade.

In 2014 the company was also given the go-ahead to build a warehouse with offices in Armthorpe, complete with new access road and link bridge over Holme Wood Lane.

The scheme was approved subject to a section 106 agreement, meaning Next must make a contribution to the cost of the future upgrading of the A630.

The major development created more than 500 jobs in the area.

Dan Fell, CEO at the Doncaster Chamber of Commerce said: “The new Next factory and warehouse is good news for Doncaster.

“Next is a major employer in the area and it’s very positive that even more jobs are in the pipeline.

“This reaffirms that Doncaster is a national hub for warehousing and logistics with more large businesses being attracted to the area as a result of the town’s excellent infrastructure.”

Plans for a new sofa factory are in keeping with Doncaster’s long history of furniture manufacturing.

Sofa chain DFS Furniture was founded by Lord Kirkham from a single store in 1969.

The Carcroft-based business now has more than 100 stores in the UK, Ireland and the Netherlands.

The firm hailed a record set of results last year as Britain’s buoyant housing market and growing consumer confidence boosted sales.

In its first set of annual results since returning to the stock market in March, DFS posted an 8.4 per cent hike in underlying earnings to £89.2 million for 2015 after total sales increased by seven per cent.

The group was listed on the London market between 1993 and 2004 before Lord Kirkham took it back into private hands.

It was then sold to private equity business Advent International for £500 million in 2010.

n Airline boost: P30