Scottish Government Supported Business Engagement Event

Haven recently attended a Supported Business Engagement event which was held on 31 August 2017 arranged by the Scottish Government.

Haven where present due to being a supported business and providing the uniform and signage contracts for Elior and Sports Scotland who were both presenting at the event.

The event was a great success, with Haven receiving great feedback from two of its contractors:

“ We are absolutely delighted with the quality of the products and services provided by all four of the businesses and are in no doubt that they have helped to make Inverclyde a sporting facility of which all of Scotland can be very proud.” Mel Young, Chair of sport Scotland

“I couldn’t recommend Haven highly enough, their dedication to fulfil our orders is inspiring and the quality of the goods has been superior to any other company I have had experience with”.  -Nigel Fanner, Elior Operations Manager



Read more


The sportscotland National Sports Training Centre Inverclyde in Largs is up and running, thanks to the significant contribution of four supported businesses.


Following a major £12million redevelopment funded by Scottish Government and sportscotland, Inverclyde is now a residential sports training centre, the first of its kind the in UK, designed with inclusivity in mind.  The ethos of inclusivity goes beyond the bricks and mortar and extends to the engagement of a number of suppliers to the centre.


NL Industries (Wishaw), Dovetail Enterprises (Dundee), Haven Pts (Larbert) and The Sign Factory (Larbert) all secured contracts to supply goods and services to the new centre in Largs through the Scottish Government Framework for Supported Factories and Businesses.


The aim of the framework is to increase access to procurement opportunities for small businesses, the voluntary sector and disadvantaged individuals across Scotland, and to provide a pathway into the open labour market.


Aileen Campbell, Minister for Public Health and Sport said:


“We warmly welcome sportscotland awarding contracts to supported businesses in the delivery of the new National Sports Training Centre Inverclyde.


“It’s an excellent example of how our procurement framework is actively supporting disabled and disadvantaged people access the open labour market which is critical in helping us build a fairer and healthier Scotland for all.”


At the recent Central Government Procurement Improvement event sportscotland’s work with supported businesses was highlighted in the keynote address.


Mel Young, Chair of sportscotland said:


“Right from the start of the project to redevelop our national centre Inverclyde, we were determined that inclusivity would be at its heart, in everything that we did.


“At sportscotland we know the impact that opportunity can have on individuals and communities which is why we were so keen to engage with supported business to deliver our vision at Inverclyde.


“We are absolutely delighted with the quality of the products and services provided by all four of the businesses and are in no doubt that they have helped to make Inverclyde a sporting facility of which all of Scotland can be very proud.”


NL Industries provided the stylish furniture that can be seen throughout the building, from the impressive reception area to the café and dining room overlooking the grounds of the Inverclyde estate.


David McCaig, Business Development Manager with NL Industries said:


“We were extremely proud to be part of this ambitious project. The National Sports Training Centre is an inspiring venue for everyone taking part in sport and we are delighted it showcases some of the high quality furnishings produced by our skilled workforce in Wishaw.”


In each of the 60 accessible twin bedrooms, the beds supplied by Dovetail Enterprises can accommodate even the tallest of basketball players while still leaving space for two wheelchair athletes to move freely around the room.


Ann Jamieson, Sales and Marketing Manager, Dovetail said:


“Dovetail was delighted to be awarded the contract for the supply of client own specification mattresses and bed bases on this exciting and high profile project.


“Working with sportscotland allowed us to demonstrate, not only that our products are high quality and competitively priced, but also that we are able to manufacture to the unique requirements of the client, in this case 7ft long to ensure the tallest of sports personnel could sleep stretched out if so desired.


sportscotland had a very clear specification in mind, including the base colour, working closely with them to meet the specification or to offer suitable alternatives ensured that these bed bases co-ordinate with the fantastic surroundings of the bedrooms with a mattresses specification to meet all client requirements.


“As a Supported Business it’s fantastic that the sportscotland procurement team engaged and went on to award contracts not just to Dovetail but to others within the group, allowing us all to demonstrate our ability to complete a project on time and on budget, plus fulfilling the specification requirements.”


Staff at the centre, and their sister centre at Cumbrae, are easily identifiable thanks to the smart uniforms delivered by Haven Products in Larbert.


Jamie Lawson, Regional Operating Officer – UK at Haven Products said:


“Haven Products are one of Scotland’s leading Supported Businesses providing vital training and employment opportunities for over 220 disabled workers across our four factory locations in Scotland.


“Having worked very closely with the senior procurement team at sportscotland, Haven Products are delighted to now be a strategic supply chain partner to sportscotland.  It is a great honour and testament for our staff that Haven PTS (textile workwear and uniform) business and the Haven Sign Factory business have recently provided products and services for the very impressive newly opened National Sports Training Centre in Largs.”

Navigating around the centre is made simple thanks to the bespoke signage delivered by The Sign Factory, based in Larbert.  The signs include a version of Grace’s sign, a campaign by a young girl, Grace Warnock from East Lothian, to highlight that not all disabilities are visible.  Grace suffers from Crohn’s disease and has experienced prejudice when using disabled toilets.  The signs produced by The Sign Factory are the largest of Grace’s campaign so far.


The Sign Factory also added the ‘wow factor’ to the interior of the building by producing vibrant branding and murals illustrating the sports and athletes that will use the centre.


Martin Delaney, Commercial Manager with Haven Sign Factory said:


“The Haven Sign Factory was delighted to be invited to pitch for and win such a prestigious project. We welcome the opportunity to showcase our skills on such a high profile project. The National Sports Training Centre is a state of the art venue for training at the highest level and demands to be branded as such.


“From our state of the art sign manufacturing plant at Larbert we successfully managed and delivered this project on time and within budget.  sportscotland and their design team had a very clear vision of how they wanted the centre to look, I believe The Haven Sign Factory helped them realise that vision. The stunning wall and ceiling graphics bring the studios and public areas to life, while the bold clear way finding graphics and door signs give clear direction when navigating the centre.


“We as a supported Business would like to take this opportunity to thank the sportscotland procurement team for awarding this contract under the Scottish Governments Framework for Supported Businesses, allowing us to show we can deliver products and services at the very highest level and at the same time provide sustainable training and employment opportunities for disabled people in our communities.”


Inverclyde has already welcomed its first residential guests and community users and the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.  The contribution of NL Industries, Dovetail Enterprises, Haven Pts and The Sign Factory has played a significant part in enhancing the Inverclyde experience.


Read more

Haven gives a helping hand.

Recently we have featured in CalMac’s annual newsletter Horizon for April. This issue focused on the work of Haven as a supported business and social enterprise which has been having great success as an SME and the fantastic work we do for CalMac.

Read the full article below.

As part of our BID commitment we agreed with Transport Scotland that we would ‘maximise opportunities for local SME’s, support businesses and social enterprises, where possible, to tender for supply contracts’.

To help us deliver on this commitment we have been exploring opportunities to work with social enterprise businesses across our network. A social enterprise trades to tackle social problems, improve communities, people’s life chances, or the environment. They make their money from selling goods and services in the open market, but they reinvest their profits back into the business or the local community. One such business is Haven Products.

So who are Haven Products and what type of services do they carry out for us?

Haven is part of the Rehab Group, a leading not-for-profit organisation providing rehabilitation, training and care services for disabled and socially excluded people throughout the UK. Haven operates from a number of key sites across Scotland, delivering services to a client list ranging from international blue chip firms to local businesses. While operating as a commercially viable and efficient business, Haven is first and foremost a social enterprise; with the unique attribute being that the majority of their highly skilled and comprehensively trained workforce comprises of disabled and disadvantaged adults.

Haven provide a variety of services including: Signage Provision, Document Scanning, Textile Manufacturing, Secure Storage and Fulfilment,Printing and Mailing Solutions, Quality Inspection and Re-work and Complementary Workforce Provision.

Here at CalMac we make use of both their printing and mailing solution and their signage provision.When we send information to all our employees at home, some 1600 locations, we use Haven to print what we require, address envelopes with each individual name and address, pack everything we need into the envelopes and then ensure delivery through Royal Mail.Over the last couple of years they have undertaken mailings for us providing employees with information on the CHFS2 Executive Summaries, pensions information, Chief Executive updates, to name but a few.

On signage, recently we have been working closely with them on the roll out of the new operator mark, ensuring that we have appropriate signs across our network.                                                            It is important that our staff and customers have visibility of the new operator mark so that they are ware of who is delivering the operating service.

As a business we are delighted to be working with this social enterprise and playing our part in supporting economic sustainability within the communities across our network.

Read more

Engraving with confidence

Our latest piece of equipment in Sign Factory is our new router/engraving machine. The engraving machine has the capability to engrave control panels, flat-cut letters, valve tags, plaques, door nameplates/sliders, memorial plaques and braille.  Staff have been trained on the new machine. Training on the day consisted of actual customer jobs, which gave the staff a good confident step forward for the next engraving job.

Stuart Kemp, Sign Operative comments: “I’ve enjoyed learning the new computer programme, creating and designing drawings/patterns for our customers. It’s a new journey in my job, where one day it can be easy and fun and other days it can be challenging, but I’m keen to learn more and create many more interesting items for our customers”.

Read more

Rolls Roller – Applying the Vinyl

We’ve an exciting new addition in Haven Sign Factory with the installation of our new RollsRoller, which replaces our old but much appreciated press roller. The roller is 1.6 metres wide by 4 metres long, a dynamic piece of equipment we use to apply vinyl onto substrate which can be flat metal panels.

So what are the benefits? This new piece of equipment is much safer and simpler to use. The roller will help our production team to work towards a safer, more efficient and effective way of working. With this size of roller we can produce large sized sign panels without the hassle of having to use props to hold the long sheets of metal.

David Murray, Sign Operative commented, “It’s a much safer, easier and more accurate machine to work, the old machine you needed two Operatives to work it safely, whereas now I can work  on my own”.


Read more