SHD Logistics is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Decathlon plays key role in Northampton’s business community

Entry to The Logistics Awards 2020 open on Monday 17 March. As we invite operators to start thinking about projects to enter, we look back at the successes of our 2019 winners.​


Decathlon won the New Facility (over 150,000 sq ft) category for its 242,000 sq ft warehouse in Northampton.

In late 2016, with a lease expiry looming, sporting goods retailer Decathlon needed to relocate from its 17,650 sq m warehouse in Northampton’s Brackmills Point – and it needed to do so quickly. And, with a fast-growing UK store network – up to 45 and counting – as well as expanding online sales, the move provided the ideal opportunity to acquire a larger, more efficient, purpose-built facility.

Decathlon wanted to remain in Brackmills Point. A 6.5 ha site, with room for a 23,900 sq m building plus space for expansion of up to another 10,000 sq m, was identified and discussions began at the end of 2016 – with a requirement that the project be handed over for fit out in May 2018 and completed in time for Decathlon first deliveries to be dispatched in October 2018.

Key to Decathlon achieving consent was the hands-on role played by expansion manager Ricardo Rodriguez Mejias, who worked closely with partner Barjane to persuade Northampton Borough Council this site provided the only opportunity to retain and increase the Decathlon jobs within the area. Rodriguez personally attended planning meetings and public consultation meetings, demonstrating Decathlon’s commitment to the development.

The main 22,500 sq m warehouse space incorporates high storage and racking space as well as a two tier mezzanine adding 10,000 sq m, 28 loading docks and one level access door. Leisure facilities have been fully integrated into the new building, including; a 170 sq m gym; two dedicated MUGAs (multi-use games pitches) with equipment; entertainment area in the staff canteen with comfy seating, table football, TV, Xbox, Wii, books and more.

Decathlon is a proactive partner in the economic and social development of Brackmills and, indeed, of Northampton as a whole. Leader of Northampton Borough Council and Borough Councillor for Nene Valley, Jonathan Nunn said: “Northampton is very glad to have Decathlon as part of its business community.”


Wincanton with Adidas

Last year's safety winners Wincanton with Adidas looked at how it could improve engagement with drivers on safety and performance to reduce collisions, total road accidents and lost time injuries.

Wincanton has worked in partnership with adidas for over 10 years, providing transport services to support inbound and outbound deliveries from the site in Trafford Park, Manchester.

The contract with adidas is based on the continued delivery of Health & Safety (H&S) excellence, exceptional service, ongoing cost saving and innovation initiatives. Introducing a new behavioural safety change programme using data from a telematics system was identified as a key initiative to improve H&S performance.

Wincanton wanted to replace the existing system, which required a disproportionate amount of time for management.

After thorough research, Wincanton selected a new system from MiX telematics. This would be the framework from which it could begin to drive measurable safety improvements.

Being ‘safer’ is the foundation of its behavioural change programme. Within the first year, this initiative delivered:

  • 83% reduction in harsh braking incidents
  • 72% reduction in harsh braking incidents
  • 89% reduction in over-speeding events, which resulted in increase of over 280% of drivers measured at Green performance level within 1 year
  • 28% reduction in total RTAs (Road Traffic Accidents) and 50% reduction of blameworthy RTAs.


Christie Lights

The winner of the 2019 Innovation category, Christie Lites, implemented a multipoint, multi-directional shuttle system at its Coventry site.

SEC Storage designed and installed a shuttle system installed at Coventry-based Christie Lites which has provided a dramatic increase in volumetric capacity and five-fold rise in the amount of pickable locations, ensuring optimum operational efficiency.

Christie Lites, a leading US stage lighting company, worked with SEC Storage to design a solution to store its stage trussing, which was being bulk-stacked at its large warehouse facility in Coventry, as its existing system was causing several key operational issues, in both capacity and selectivity.

Benefits of the system include increased volumetric utilisation of 55.3% of the total cube (taking into account all tolerances and product spacings required). A 229% increase in volumetric capacity when compared with the APR option. The company saw a 500% increase in the amount of pickable locations ensuring that 100% of the SKUs had their own dedicated lane, hence selectable.

Ground floor picking levels allow for rapid picking of fast-moving products, contributing towards a significant operational cost saving. Design made use of readily available componentry from blue-chip suppliers, so parts could be replaced easily.


Carousel Logistics

The winner of the 2019 growth category, Carousel Logistics, says an exceptional service-offering has remained important throughout its expansion.

The company’s rigorous buy, build and partner strategy has been vital in achieving exponential growth during 2018-9. In March, Carousel announced it had acquired time-critical logistics company BDA Logistics Innovation (BDA); its third acquisition in just three years. The deal increased revenue of the business by more than 50% and was a strategic decision that increased the group’s coverage and position in Europe, plus sector-experience in key markets. The group offers clients a leading technology platform, a wider service portfolio, plus an extended network service in Germany, the Netherlands, Ireland and the UK.

Gateway is Carousel’s custom-built data exchange, designed for the hyper-connected age of manufacturing. Carousel’s proprietary platform is easy-to integrate and connects
businesses seamlessly with its pan-European network, ensuring the smooth flow of time-critical parts and products. 

By joining together all stakeholders in the value chain, Gateway facilitates the seamless sharing of information and enables the synchronised handling and sharing of real-time data. The benefits this brings to the client are: faster lead times, better forecast accuracy, improved working capital, flexibility to scale and increased customer satisfaction.

By investing in technology as part of its strategy, Carousel has been able to respond to the growing demand for service-logistics, giving its clients all the visibility and control they need. It has also enabled Carousel to scale its own business, at pace, without impacting on client service delivery.


Clipper Logistics with the University of Derby and Sheffield Hallam University

The winner of the Future Skills Award employed 400+ people through its Fresh Start campaign, including 60+ ex-offenders, with a retention rate of 92%.

Clipper has been operating at the forefront of retail logistics from 46 sites across the UK and Europe for over two decades. With a workforce of over 5,200, it works with some of the most celebrated brands on the high street, including John Lewis, ASOS, Asda, Superdry and Wilko. With the continued uncertainty surrounding

Brexit, taking with it many European workers, the industry was due to hit a critical new labour low. Clipper responded to these issues by launching an apprenticeship degree programme in partnership with Sheffield Hallam University. Clipper also champions its own 18-month Graduate Scheme, aimed at developing the skills, knowledge and ambitions of its recruits helping them embark on a long and varied journey with logistics – and succeed.

There are more than 11 million marginalised people in the UK. Including people with disabilities, older people and ex-offenders as well as full-time parents, ex-homeless, refugees and retirees. Clipper opened its doors to people who might otherwise have a barrier into entering the world of work with its Fresh Start programme. The programme has gone from strength to strength, with all of Clipper’s UK sites now fully engaged with it. There are 400+ people employed through Fresh Start, including 60+ ex-offenders, with a retention rate of 92%.

Future Leaders
In order to provide attractive career prospects to those who are looking to enter the logistics sector, Clipper sought to work with Derby University to source an understanding on how they could develop a training programme to support students that were undertaking a degree in Logistics and Supply Chain Management. The objective of the programme was to provide students with the ability to obtain real world skills and experience, whilst completing the programme within the logistics environment.

Clipper’s Burton-on-Trent site is home to Superdry’s UK warehousing, e-fulfilment and returns management centre, so students were provided with access to different departments within Superdry in order to complete their assigned projects and gain hands-on experience. Clipper, Superdry and the university students have all reaped the rewards as a result of the work placements.


Operator McCulla goes off grid following £3m investment

McCulla has invested £3 million in an anaerobic digester plant at its Lisburn site in Northern Ireland. Since installation in February 2017, the coldstore no longer relies on grid electricity. The plant had been running on agricultural product which it had planted but tin 2019 it started transitioning to food waste product. This frees up agricultural land (on McCulla’s family-owned farms) and prevents food waste going to landfill.

It collects food waste from customers’ factories and employs Frylite to collect waste oil from chip shops and restaurants for transportation to the AD plant. It intends to use the plants by-products biogas and hot water for other purposes to further reduce its carbon footprint.

McCulla can make its own compressed natural gas from the biogas produced by the plant, meaning it will be at the forefront of alternative fuel vehicle usage within the UK/Irish industry (once vehicle manufacturers provide viable solutions).

McCulla Ireland is committed to continuous improvement and future proofing the operational success of its family-owned organisation which has just celebrated 50 years in business. Major investment, meticulous planning, innovation and diversification alongside a highly skilled, motivated and loyal workforce has resulted in a finely-tuned ‘best in class’ process-driven supply chain.

The company’s supply chain incorporates two strategically-placed coldstorage warehouse facilities within Ireland and a new food processing facility has been added this year. The company believes it is the only one in the UK/Ireland to have a totally carbon-neutral coldstore.

McCulla uses all its own infrastructure, so has full control of the supply chain from start to finish. It has also moved its operation into additional niche sectors, including compliance-heavy pharmaceutical and tech goods logistics involving temperature-critical and/or high value/sensitive loads (e.g. controlled drugs). This division, established in 2014, now exceeds £1 million turnover. 


The Logistics Awards is an annual celebration of excellence in the logistics and supply chain sectors. The awards recognise the most innovative projects taking place throughout the industry over the last 12 months.

The next edition of the Logistics Awards will take place on Wednesday 16 September 2020 at the Royal Lancaster Hotel, London. Entry submission will open on Monday 17 March 2020. The deadline for entries is Friday 22 May 2020.

Interested in entering? Register your interest to stay up-to-speed with important updates and we'll notifty you when it's time to prepare your entry.

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.