We work in an industry that is always trying to make up for lost time. There’s no getting around it; when fitting out the interiors for a hospitality business, our start date will almost inevitably be delayed – but our deadline rarely moves to match.

From construction to fit-out, new and refurbished developments often fall behind schedule. With the decoration and soft furnishings the last to come through the doors, it’s up to us to make up time to ensure the open or relaunch date doesn’t slip.

It’s something we’re all used to, but, importantly, it’s an area where ‘Buying British’ can be the difference between a missed deadline and a project delivered on time.

The key to this is quick turnaround – and that’s where British manufacturers have a big advantage. Ena Shaw Contract has always been a UK-based manufacturer and it gives us a competitive edge. In fact, we’ve won contracts based on our ability to guarantee a quick turnaround should project timescales be delayed.

An example is that of the Olympic Village, where we fitted over 16,000 athletes’ bedrooms with curtains and blinds in just four months. The build programme slipped and the fit-out didn’t begin until much later than initially planned. A late completion wasn’t an option – it’s hardly as though the Olympics could have been delayed – so we were against the clock from the outset.

An overseas contract furnisher would have to factor in the extra time for shipping and potential delays at customs, so they simply couldn’t have completed the job on such a quick turnaround.

Added to that is the fact that changing specifications and demands can often mean last minute changes to a brief. Using UK-based manufacturers allows a very fast reaction time, ensuring that the job is finished to a high quality and within the deadline.

Of course, that’s not the only reason why it pays to keep manufacturing in this country. Britain – and most notably, the North-west, where Ena Shaw Contract is based – has a proud history in textiles and produces some of the best quality materials and products in the world. The craftsmanship on offer in the UK is truly world class. Everything from stitching to finishing is consistently good quality – and our clients know that.

It’s so important that contractors and buyers see the value in using British products, manufacturers and suppliers. I’m proud to say that Ena Shaw Contract manufactures exclusively in the UK. It’s part of our 80-year company heritage and allows us to keep a historic industry, skills and, of course, investment in this country.

Ena Shaw Contract is the contract-only arm of soft furnishings specialist, Ena Shaw Group. It has a long-standing history of providing top quality, bespoke soft furnishings in the hospitality sector, with recent projects including curtains, blinds and soft furnishings for international hotel chains, luxury castles in Scotland, marina developments in Cumbria and independent family run businesses.