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Today we decided to see if you could build a reasonable Christmas tree out of Gratnells trays.  After a few failed starts and enlisting the help of our resident consulting engineer we managed to build something resembling a tree from green Jumbo F3 trays.  With some tinsel and baubles you’d hardly know it wasn’t plucked from a forest!  Now it has pride of place outside our Director’s box in the factory. Pictures show me and Marketing Director Richard Picking next to the tree and Marketing Coordinator Emily adding some final touches.




Gratnells takes the stage!

We’re delighted to announce the launch of Gratnells Stage. This is a new venture for us into the portable staging marketplace.  With the help of leading industrial staging designer Antony Hill we have launched a new modular staging system for schools, church halls, public spaces and anywhere that might need an easy to assemble stage.


Gratnells stage is very high quality and versatile.  It’s easy to assemble and demount, anti slip, and is designed to be quiet unlike similar products.

You can find out more information over on www.GratnellsStage.com



A-Level Project

Recently we were approached by Josie Cowperthwaite – an A Level student at Bullers Wood Girls School in Chislehurst, Kent – to help with her Design and Technology project. We were happy to send her a selection of trays for the Early Years storage unit she was planning to design.

Josie’s finished item is a spinning storage unit which holds a selection of Gratnells trays along with a mirror, a clock, a whiteboard and a magnetic panel. It’s a fantastic little product and maybe we will see Josie in the industry as a rising star in the next few years!



Announcing the NEW N3 Jumbo Tray!

We are pleased to announce a new tray in our N Range. The N3 Jumbo tray is the latest addition to this range, sitting alongside the N1 Shallow tray and the N2 Deep tray.

Our N range of trays has been specially designed to fit in school furniture that is 400mm deep (a size found mostly in Europe, not the UK). Now with the addition of the N3 Jumbo tray, furniture manufacturers and catalogue retailers will be able to offer a wider variety of storage options and offer storage for larger items too. This tray size will be most popular in preschools and primary schools.

You can download a product sheet with technical information from the trade section of our website.


  • The N3 is available in colours to match the other N trays – Flame Red, Royal Blue, Grass Green, Sunshine Yellow and Translucent.
  • As with all Gratnells products – guaranteed for five years
  • Made from polyproplene and fully recyclable
  • Height – 300mm
  • Width – 312mm
  • Length – 377mm
  • Code – N3


Shortlisted by The Consortium

It is always nice to catch up with major customers at the Education Show. The Consortium, based in the West Country, has been giving presentations on their future business plans at the show and it is always interesting to see what they will be doing. In the past year The Consortium has bought West Mercia Supplies and at the same time been bought themselves by Smiths News. With this strong backing the school supplier is in an excellent position to grow in the marketplace. Gratnells was also shortlisted as one of their Suppliers of the Year but we were beaten to the line by British Thornton. Congrats to them, but my eye is on the trophy for 2014!

Gratnells nominated as Top Supplier


Hey Presto – magic at the Education Show!

We’ve booked a Magician to perform some magic tricks for visitors at the Gratnells Stand (H10) during the three days of the Education Show in Birmingham next week. Sebastian Hunt, a corporate magician, is a member of both the prestigious Magic Circle in London and Equity. His act – which is guaranteed to draw a large crowd – will be ably supported by his beautiful assistant –  the Gratstack®!

I’m sure I’ll be meeting many of you at the Show where we will be showcasing both our secondary science storage range and our junior range. Be sure and drop by Stand H10 to say hello and catch some magic.  If you want to meet up at the show or would like any more information about the Magician or GratStack just drop me an email.



Gearing up for the Education Show

Our next show will be the Education Show in a few weeks time.  We’ll be on stand H10 so be sure and drop by and say hello. This is always an important show in our calendar to showcase both our primary and secondary science range –  and a good chance for me to catch up with some of our UK customers.

We have some exciting things planned for our stand – and we are continuing to hold seminars as part of our Learning Rooms project.  This year we have arranged for Kevin Bullock, Headmaster of Fordham Primary School, to speak about pupil engagement.

The Education Show runs from 14 to 16 March at the NEC in Birmingham. Further details on Kevin’s presentation are in our press release below.


PRESS RELEASE 20th February 2013


Former Education Advisor to Cabinet Office to speak at Education Show


Gratnells Learning Rooms sponsors Kevin Bullock, one of the country’s leading Headteachers and a former Education Advisor to the Cabinet Office, to speak on the topic: ‘High Impact Pupil Engagement’ at a seminar on the opening day of the Education Show on 14th March to be held at the NEC in Birmingham.


In his talk, which is CPD Accredited, Kevin – who is currently Headteacher of a Cambridgeshire outstanding-rated Ofsted primary school – will share valuable tips, techniques and insights relating to effective teacher/class interaction. “The aim of my talk is to encourage self-reflection and re-evaluation of current practice, whilst considering some simple but very effective tools and approaches to enhance classroom performance”, said Kevin from his office at Fordham Primary (CoE) School.

Kevin will be speaking between 11.00am and 11.45am in the Primary Theatre at the Education Show and will be available to answer questions afterwards at sponsor, Gratnells Learning Rooms’ Stand H10 where free information packs will be available for all delegates at Kevin’s presentation. Demand to attend this free seminar is expected to be high, so prompt attendance is advised to secure a place.

For more information or to arrange an interview with Kevin Bullock. Contact: mary@gratnellsmarketing.com


Kevin Bullock to speak at the Education Show with Gratnells
Kevin Bullock



About Kevin Bullock: Kevin is one of the country’s leading Headteachers with a string of Outstanding Ofsteds under his belt, as well as Principal Consultant at KB Concepts. (www.kbconcepts.co.uk)


Currently Headteacher at Fordham Primary (Cof E) Cambridgeshire, Kevin Bullock, has been praised in three consecutive Ofsted Inspections for his inspirational and outstanding leadership as well as his effective and innovative approaches to organisational management.


In addition to his role as Headteacher and a vocational consultant in leadership management, Kevin has also worked in an advisory capacity with the Cabinet Office and D.C.S.F. and produces guidance documents on simple but effective approaches to school management.


In 2003 his school was highlighted by the Prime Minister’s Cabinet Office for its high standards and innovative approach to management. In the following year, Mr Bell, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Schools, highlighted the school for its outstanding Ofsted Report in his annual report to Parliament. Then in November 2006 and in 2010 it was judged Outstanding once again, achieving a hat trick of consecutive Ofsteds!

In February 2011 Kevin’s School became a National Leadership School, with Kevin becoming a National Leader in Education.


About Gratnells Learning Rooms: Gratnells Learning Rooms is an educational project supported by Harlow-based Gratnells, the leading manufacturer of school storage solutions. For more information on Gratnells Learning Rooms: www.gratnellslearningrooms.com



Ding dong merrily on high

Santa and his elves are busy getting ready for Christmas.  And of course with all the toys they have to make they need plenty of storage, and what’s better than Gratnells?  So that’s the theme for this year’s Gratnells Chrismas card.

Wishing you all the best for Christmas and a happy and prosperous 2013!

New mini runner for wooden furniture

Some of our customers may not be aware that we now make a mini runner. This new plastic runner – the P3 –  is a shorter version of our best-selling G3 which is commonly found in wooden furniture.



The P3 has been designed for shallower furniture units and is ideal for holding both Gratnells new Cubby Tray (the J1) and also our NS1 and NS2 trays.  If you would like a sample please just drop me an email.