Thomas Armstrong - About Us


Our History

Our History

The business was founded by Thomas Armstrong in Cockermouth in 1830 and consisted of saw mills and joinery works. Throughout the 19th Century the business continued to develop and expand, so by 1900 the saw mills were employing over 60 men.

A newspaper advertisement of that date described the Company as Sawmillers, Timber and Slate Merchants, Builders and Joiners, Explosive Agents and Undertakers; to these were soon added Quarry owners and Coach Builders.


A family run business becomes a Limited Company .....

The business was managed in the period 1830 - 1930 by four successive generations of the Armstrong family. October 1930 finally saw the end of the Armstrong family as owners and managers of the Company and a Limited Company was formed by four local businessmen with Mr Glover Denham as Managing Director. He was to provide the foresight and drive throughout a period of 24 years to his death in 1954. During this time he expanded and developed the Company, bringing it through the difficult post-war years and leaving it strong, healthy and ready to move forward in the second half of the 20th Century.

The first recorded Public Works Contract was carried out in 1926, which comprised 50 houses, roads and sewers being built for Workington Corporation. A larger number of such contracts were carried out during the 20’s and 30’s, some of the most notable being Dovenby Hall Mental Hospital, New Central School Workington and Salterbeck Housing Estate, Workington.


The company rapidly expands and diversifies .....

The rapid expansion and diverse activities of the Company brought about a reorganisation in 1964 with Thomas Armstrong Limited becoming a Holding Company. Subsidiary Companies were formed to cover the contracting, timber manufacture, concrete block manufacture and quarrying, haulage and vehicle maintenance activities.

During the immediate post-war period the development of the Clinecon Building Block Construction featuring an interlocking building block enabled the Company to construct upwards of 18,000 houses for Local Authorities and Housing Associations throughout Cumbria and the North East. The manufacture of Clinecon was transferred from Cockermouth in 1960 to Rowlands Gill, Tyne & Wear where it has continued to prosper culminating in a modern high production unit being opened in 1982.

The Thomas Armstrong (Holdings) group of companies .....

Our Headquarters at Flimby

The move to the new Headquarters at Flimby in the spring of 1986 initiated a further period of expansion and growth for the Group, which has continued to the present time.
The Group was strengthened by the acquisition of Garners Concrete Blocks Limited, ACP (Concrete) Limited and the block pavior manufacturing plant at Consett.
Further acquisitions of William Rainford (Holdings) Ltd, Coulthard Concrete Products (1980) Ltd and Barnett’s (Buglawton) Ltd  enabled the Group to extend its geographical operations, which now extend from Glasgow to Congleton (Cheshire) and from Newcastle upon Tyne to Liverpool.

Continuing to expand and innovate into the 21st century .....

The Group has continued to innovate and embrace the ever changing opportunities presented in today’s world and has successfully entered into both Partnering and Public Finance Initiative agreements. A multi million pound investment was been made in the manufacture of aerated building blocks at Catterick in North Yorkshire which will expand and enhance the Group’s portfolio of building products.

In mid-2007, we acquired two further well established, respected companies; Stocks Blocks Ltd in Leeds, manufacturer of high quality concrete blocks and CHC Floors Ltd in Manchester (aka Collier & Henry Ltd), manufacturer of precast, prestressed concrete floor panels and beams.

In 2016 we continued our programme of expansion and increasing portfolio with the acquisition of Lakeland Pavers Ltd (Penrith) and the construction of a brand new high capacity block production facility in Leeds.

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