Forterra News

How our Load Selector service is helping a builders’ merchant to improve its stock profile

East Anglia-based Collier & Catchpole is an independent builders’ merchant with origins dating back almost 200 years.

The company operates two large yards, one in Colchester and one in Ipswich, and a smaller yard in the village of Lawford in north-east Essex.

London Brick is one of Collier & Catchpole’s most popular brick ranges; however, rather than being limited to just London Brick, they now have the option to mix this product with Forterra Ecostock, selected Butterley products, and Thermalite and aggregate block. This solution is ideal to help manage the space restrictions at the Lawford yard where stock holding was very limited; historically they would have used intermediaries or inter-branch transfers to fulfil customer orders, often taking two to three hours each day to organise.

Mixed loads are a game changer

“Forterra’s Load Selector has been a game changer for our business,” says Purchasing Manager at Collier & Catchpole, Jasper Smathers, “having the option to mix London Brick with other bricks and Thermalite and aggregate block on a single load – and at full load rates – is fantastic.”

The option to order mixed loads of brick and block has brought numerous benefits to the business:

Improved yard control – because they now order little and often, Collier & Catchpole are able to keep a greater variety of Forterra’s brick and block range at any one time. The smaller volume also makes it easier to keep stock neat and tidy.

Fewer deliveries – the reduction in inter-branch deliveries to the Lawford site is a significant improvement that has reduced transport costs and saved staff time so they can be more productive elsewhere.

Happier customers – with a greater range of both brick and block , the team are able to fulfil customer orders more quickly than before; if they don’t have particular colour in stock, they know they can quickly order from the full range of 30 different types of London Brick, with the option to mix the load with Thermalite or aggregate blocks or bricks from Forterra’s Butterley and Ecostock ranges.

“When we first heard that Forterra was introducing its Load Selector service, we knew it would be good news for our business. It’s enabled us to reduce our stock levels and have better control of our ordering. Most importantly of all, it’s helped us improve our product range and service to customers – it means we are now able to really shine,” says Jasper.

Find out more about our Load Selector here.