The company was formed in 1983 as a one man business in the Enterprise Workshops at Byker with a 320 sq. ft unit, a bag of tools, a £200 overdraft and the intention of manufacturing drawing office equipment and similar furniture. The larger items of equipment provided by the enterprise centre were shared communally with other tenants.
In 1986 the business moved to larger premises at Pandon Gate House, 5 City Road, Newcastle upon Tyne. As finance was critical the unit was located on the ground floor of a semi derelict fish processing factory. Unfortunately there was a difference of several feet between the unit and the street level which possibly explained the low rent. In addition much renovation work was required to strengthen floors and turn the site into a more usable manufacturing resource. Access limitations through narrow stairways and around cast iron pillars every twelve feet caused problems with the manufacturing of large furniture items whilst all materials had to be carried-in by hand off the busy street and up a flight of domestic stairs.
The control and manufacture all of the furniture components enables solutions to be as versatile and diverse as our customer’s imagination is broad. Ambic offered an unrivalled level of design, construction and fitting of unique furniture and room solutions that satisfied the diverse needs of their customers. The market at this time was extremely buoyant and further growth was not possible without additional manufacturing space and larger essential manufacturing tools. This hindered business growth within the by then restrictive individual factory units at Stella Gill. This led Ambic to invest in the development of a new factory site.
In February 2007 Ambic secured the purchase of a five-acre development site alongside the Stella Gill Industrial Estate in Pelton Fell, Chester-le-Street, Co Durham. A new factory was designed and built with production transferred in September 2009. The business now occupies 24,000 sq ft (2,400 sq m) on the 5 acre site with major external storage, vehicle manoeuvring area and extensive expansion space.
This facility is now a state of the art fully integrated production unit utilising the latest technology and CNC controlled manufacturing methods.
The factory is fully integrated with the raw materials of wood, metal, plastics, paint, fasteners etc. delivered to the northern end and fully finished furniture being loaded at the southern end.
In between there are separate departments for :
- Wood Machining – to cut, drill, laminate, shape and sand the wood sheets and laminates into furniture panels and components.
- Polishing – to sand, stain and varnish these panels and components into fully finished items ready for assembly. This department also produces the Ambic signature polished waterproof edges.
- Welding – this shop uses lengths of steel tube which are cut and welded into substantial frames for furniture items, tables and desks. This department has the latest CNC tube bending machine to produce the smooth rounded furniture without sharp corners necessary within schools.
- Sheet Metalwork – using flat sheets of steel guillotined, formed and fabricated into metal components used in the manufacture and assembly of furniture and incorporated to improve the strength and rigidity of Ambic furniture not found in lesser quality suppliers.
- Powder coating & Painting – Used to produce a hard wearing durable finish which complements the high standards maintained in the products of the company as this facility is in house the process enables a more rapid delivery schedule and allows the company to maintain its quality standards.
- Precision Engineering & Tool Making – Supports the factory manufacturing equipment and produces bespoke precision components.
- Assembly area with installation teams – All Ambic furniture is delivered fully assembled either in the factory or on site by our site fitting teams where fitted furniture has been specified. This department is supported by our fleet of vehicles covering England, Scotland, and Wales.
- Solid Grade Laminate Fabrication (Trespa) – produces toilet cubicles, wet areas laboratories, kitchen areas, Solid Surfacing Fabrication (Corian, Staron) – produces food server counters, laboratories and high specification installations.
- Plastics Fabrication (Perspex, Polyethylene, PVC).
- Sand Blasting – Renovation of metal items our customers wish to have refurbished
- Vinyl Cutting – In house facility to cut out coloured animal shapes, plant shapes and lettering.
- Stores – stock of furniture components, building, plumbing, drainage, plastering, decorating, flooring, ceiling and electrical materials.