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Lowestoft firm scores in Cardiff

PUBLISHED: 05:56 01 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:45 06 July 2010

Paul Hill, business editor

A decade ago, it was a daunting job that took 10 men more than four hours work.

But now the job of erecting new rugby posts at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium has taken three men just half an hour - thanks to a new assembly system designed by Lowestoft's Harrod UK.

A decade ago, it was a daunting job that took 10 men more than four hours work.

But now the job of erecting new rugby posts at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium has taken three men just half an hour - thanks to a new assembly system designed by Lowestoft's Harrod UK.

Harrod, one of the UK's best known names in the sports equipment manufacturing, made and erected the original posts at the stadium in 1999 using a 10-strong team of men with ropes and ladders.

But after developing a new "hinged post assembly roller", Harrod has replaced the posts faster and with fewer people.

Lee Evans, the Millennium Stadium's head groundsman, said: "A job that used to terrify us all for years has been made much safer, quicker and a lot easier with Harrod UK's new device. We're in total control now whether erecting or taking down the posts utilising our tractor with the post assembly roller".

John Robinson, Harrod UK's sports sales development manager, was on site to witness the replacement of the original posts.

"It was a defining moment to see the original posts coming down to be replaced with their current counterpart," he said.

"Harrod UK are constantly reviewing and improving their product ranges, including the new Millennium Posts which feature improvements to the original design".

The old posts have been installed at the Welsh Rugby Union's training base at the Vale of Glamorgan Country Club.

The firm was founded by Ron Harrod in 1954 and began with the repair of old fishing nets - turning them into gardening netting, though later built its reputation by manufacturing sporting equipment. Harrod, which has a turnover in excess of £10m a year and employs about 120 people at its Pinbush Road headquarters, has returned to gardening in recent years with the creation of a thriving horticultural arm run by Mr Harrod's daughter Stephanie.

EDP The Business and Business2 supplements return next Wednesday and Friday.

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