Merit wins specialist construction project with UK’s oldest cosmetics manufacturer

Leading engineering and specialist construction company, Merit, has won a contract to construct a one storey factory unit including the development of a biodiverse “Sedum” grass roof for the UK’s oldest cosmetics manufacturer, John Gosnell & Co.

Gosnell’s, founded in 1677, is relocating as part of a major regeneration of the centre of Lewes, East Sussex. Its new purpose-built factory is in an environmentally sensitive location in the South Downs National Park, hence the requirement for a grass roof.

Merit will be working as Principal Contractor to deliver a new warehouse, storage areas, offices, cleanrooms and laboratory areas, as well as the new roof. This will be Merit’s first Considerate Constructors Scheme contract.

Merit will be working closely with the main client and developers, Santon North Street and Lewes District Council, who have masterminded the £180 million ‘North Street Quarter’ regeneration scheme. The scheme has been described as “the most significant development in Lewes for decades” and brings together a sustainable mixed use neighbourhood including affordable housing, vital flood defences, a riverside walkway, flexible employment space, off street parking and a healthcare hub serving 26,000 patients.

For John Gosnell & Co, the regeneration and development of both the North Street area and the Phoenix Industrial Estate, where the business is currently based, provides the opportunity to relocate into larger, and more modern facilities.

This project win for Merit contributes to a record year for the specialist construction and engineering company, with an order book which has more than doubled in the last year.

Merit is based in Northumberland and delivers specialist construction projects across the UK, particularly in the pharmaceutical, aerospace, retail and cosmetics sectors. It has a 9000m2 fabrication facility also in Northumberland and offices in London and Glasgow.

Quote from Tony Wells, Managing Director, Merit

“Merit is delighted to be working with North Street Quarter’s developers and John Gosnell & Co on their new purpose built facility in Lewes. This latest project win further demonstrates Merit’s ability to work on specialist projects within laboratory and clean manufacturing settings and also bolsters our experience in the cosmetics industry.”

Quote from Chris Warner, Managing Director, John Gosnell & Co

“This is the first time we’ve designed our own building from the ground up. Its structure means that we can exceed the rigorous standards required for manufacturing and packing our products, and allows us to extend the range, expand the business and employ more people.”