Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Bespoke worktops firm celebrates 30th anniversary

A COMPANY in Watlington that employs 40 people will celebrate its 30th anniversary next month.

A COMPANY in Watlington that employs 40 people will celebrate its 30th anniversary next month.

Counter Production makes, designs and installs worktops and other bespoke solid surfaces for the kitchen and bathroom.

It has been based at Watlington industrial estate, off Cuxham Road, since it moved from High Wycombe in May 2005.

The factory was opened by the then Henley MP Boris Johnson.

The company was founded by Patrick McGrath, who is managing director, while his wife Carol os a director. Mr McGrath said: “Thirty years is a huge milestone. It’s obviously an achievement and we’re very happy that we have been able to survive and ensure the livelihoods of not only our own families but also the families of all our employees.

“I’m proud we have come so far and I can honestly say that the past 30 years have not been like work but almost like a hobby. I get great satisfaction from producing something I actually believe in.”

Mr McGrath said the secret of the firm’s success was attention to detail. “It’s going beyond just meeting the needs of the customer and offering them something extra,” he said. “Every single job we do is crafted by one of our skilled fabricators.”

Mr McGrath said he had foreseen the potential for Corian, a blend of minerals and acrylic that creates a stone-hard surface, which the firm uses in its products.

He said: “Having studied the existing market structure, my then partner David Axworthy and I decided to form Counter Production to offer a specialised Corian supply service focused on the middle- to high-end domestic kitchen market with an uncompromising focus on quality and service. Today we continue to work with companies that we first served 30 years ago and have expanded our reach to architects, designers and developers and the wider design community.”

The most unusual piece the company has been asked to produce was a working replica of the table from The Last Supper. The surface was smooth apart from the 13 integrated Corian bowl shapes which each had a hole in the base designed to take a small fountain or spout.

Mr McGrath said: “The piece had been commissioned by a well-known conceptual artist from the Eighties and we understood that the finished piece would be fitted with small pumps and that each of the 13 bowls would have a small fountain of ‘blood’ rising and falling.”

Mrs McGrath is also a writer of historical fiction. She chairs the Historical Novel Society Conference, which will be held in Oxford next month, sponsored by Counter Production.

The speakers will include Melvyn Bragg, Professor Tracy Chevalier and Fay Weldon.



A COMPANY in Watlington that employs 40 people will celebrate its 30th anniversary next month.

Counter Production makes, designs and installs worktops and other bespoke solid surfaces for the kitchen and bathroom.

It has been based at Watlington industrial estate, off Cuxham Road, since it moved from High Wycombe in May 2005.

The factory was opened by the then Henley MP Boris Johnson.

The company was founded by Patrick McGrath, who is managing director, while his wife Carol os a director. Mr McGrath said: “Thirty years is a huge milestone. It’s obviously an achievement and we’re very happy that we have been able to survive and ensure the livelihoods of not only our own families but also the families of all our employees.

“I’m proud we have come so far and I can honestly say that the past 30 years have not been like work but almost like a hobby. I get great satisfaction from producing something I actually believe in.”

Mr McGrath said the secret of the firm’s success was attention to detail. “It’s going beyond just meeting the needs of the customer and offering them something extra,” he said. “Every single job we do is crafted by one of our skilled fabricators.”

Mr McGrath said he had foreseen the potential for Corian, a blend of minerals and acrylic that creates a stone-hard surface, which the firm uses in its products.

He said: “Having studied the existing market structure, my then partner David Axworthy and I decided to form Counter Production to offer a specialised Corian supply service focused on the middle- to high-end domestic kitchen market with an uncompromising focus on quality and service. Today we continue to work with companies that we first served 30 years ago and have expanded our reach to architects, designers and developers and the wider design community.”

The most unusual piece the company has been asked to produce was a working replica of the table from The Last Supper. The surface was smooth apart from the 13 integrated Corian bowl shapes which each had a hole in the base designed to take a small fountain or spout.

Mr McGrath said: “The piece had been commissioned by a well-known conceptual artist from the Eighties and we understood that the finished piece would be fitted with small pumps and that each of the 13 bowls would have a small fountain of ‘blood’ rising and falling.”

Mrs McGrath is also a writer of historical fiction. She chairs the Historical Novel Society Conference, which will be held in Oxford next month, sponsored by Counter Production.

The speakers will include Melvyn Bragg, Professor Tracy Chevalier and Fay Weldon.



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