Halse South West has celebrated the opening of its new headquarters after a historic move from the company’s former base in Honiton town centre which was its home for 75 years.
Thousands of members of the Westcountry farming community attended the launch event at the sixth-generation family business’s purpose built premises at the Daisy Mount junction of the A30 near Ottery St Mary.
The new premises were officially opened by Devon author Michael Morpurgo OBE, who is a joint founder of the Farms for City Children charity with his wife Clare. Mr Morpurgo was presented with a Combi Clamp machine by agricultural supplier Ritchie which restrains sheep during treatment and can be used safely by young people visiting his Devon farm.
Mr Morpurgo, whose farms have hosted nearly 80,000 children over the past 40 years said:
While they are with us, the children are fully immersed in everything necessary to keep the farms going, working in teams alongside real farmers.
The Halse South West move represents a historic moment for the family enterprise, which employs over 30 people and has a 3,000-strong customer base. The relocation to the new Daisy Mount premises is only the second time the company has moved in its 137-year history.
Halse South West, formerly known as Halse of Honiton, moved to Micklesburgh’s Foundry, just off Honiton High Street in 1942. The business, which was founded by Philip’s great, great grandfather in the1880s originally operated from premises at Sidmouth Station.
The Halse family have been proud to support the Westcountry farming community for what is now six generations as Managing Director Philip Halse has recently been joined by his son Edward with his younger son George also due to join the business next year.
After 75 years, we simply outgrew our Honiton site. We are very grateful for the support of our loyal and longstanding customers and we very much appreciate their business and the trust they have put in us over many generations. Our new premises not only demonstrate our long-term commitment to the farming community but this excellent location and the additional space we have here, enables us to offer an even better service to our customers.
The move means that improved modern workshops and machinery storage can all be accommodated on site while enabling future business expansion.
Halse South West specialises in supplying and maintaining agricultural machinery and equipment to farmers, land owners and land managers, primarily across the South West (Devon, Cornwall, Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire).
The business’s previous 1.6-acre site in Honiton has been sold to the Homes and Communities Agency which is developing a mix of high quality new homes particularly aimed at young people and first time buyers.
Attendees at the event also received a brochure, welcoming them to the event and taking them through the history of the company.