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2014-07-21 - Northgate invests in Camberley with branch relocation

Due to the tremendous success of its existing branch, Northgate Vehicle Hire is investing in Camberley, with the relocation of its existing branch in Aldershot to a bigger and more conveniently located site, in response to local demand for flexible vehicle hire. The move forms part of Northgate's commitment to keep businesses on the road and making money, as the market leader in the provision of light commercial vehicles (LCVs).

The new branch will allow the market leader in flexible vehicle hire to keep Camberley businesses on the road and making money, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by providing a risk free way of acquiring and operating vehicles. The branch also benefits from excellent links to the A32, A30 and M3, making it easier than ever before for local businesses to access LCVs.

Located on Nelson Way, the new site is 732 square feet and will house up to 40 light commercial vehicles, from cars and CDVs to short and long wheelbases and Luton vans. The wide range and ability to access specialist vehicles and equipment ensures there are vehicles to suit the needs of all types of businesses, including commercial vehicles of varying sizes and specifications.

Darren Palmer, Area Sales Manager, commented: "The new Camberley branch is situated in a convenient location, allowing Northgate to deliver flexible vehicle hire to businesses across a number of key locations. The flexibility we offer provides all of the benefits of purchase and contract hire, but with none of the risk, as customers have the ability to add, remove or change vehicles without penalty, regardless of whether they operate one, one hundred or one thousand vehicles. Recent development in our product offering means that Northgate helps businesses stay on the road longer and access vehicles quicker than anyone else in the vehicle rental industry."

He continued: "Year on year, we have experienced a rise in demand for our flexible services, and this relocation will help us to remain the biggest, the best and the company which is able to offer the most flexibility for vehicle hire."

The Camberley branch, led by Branch Manager Natalie Wearing, will feature fully inclusive business rates and competitive daily hire rates will also be on offer to the general public. Northgate has seen recent success in the south of England after the launch of its radio campaign – Down to Northgate.

2014-07-17 - Northgate Vehicle Hire recognised as Van Excellence Partner

Illustrating its commitment to exceptional van standards, Northgate Vehicle Hire has been recognised as an official Van Excellence Partner. Van Excellence is a scheme created by the Freight Transport Association (FTA) in response to the demand for an independent standards committee focused on raising standards throughout the industry and recognising excellence.

The recognition is a demonstration of Northgate's commitment to supporting the aims of Van Excellence and the promotion of the Van Excellence Code. As the market leader in the light commercial vehicle industry, Northgate prides itself on operating as a responsible and safe LCV supplier to thousands of vans across the UK.

Having met the initiative's demanding standards, Northgate was recognised by the body for its safe, efficient and sustainable operation, which ensured that Northgate operates in accordance with the Van Excellence Code.

Gary Dean, UK Technical Support Manager at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Van safety and sustainable operations is a key focus at Northgate and being recognised as Van Excellence partners reaffirms this commitment. As partners we have proven to meet quality standards across the board, including vehicle conditions, safe working environments, vehicle standards and vehicle administration. We were confident that our own quality standards would meet those of the industry scheme and we were not disappointed. As a market leader within the LCV industry we have much to share with our peers in terms of best practice in the area of vehicles standards, compliance and health and safety."

Mark Cartwright, Head of Vans and Logistics Buyers at FTA, commented: "Northgate is the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, so we are delighted to have them on board to help us communicate the Van Excellence standards to a wider audience. Safe and sustainable driving is essential to ensure the smooth operation of businesses across the UK, and it is fantastic to see a company with Northgate's gravitas recognise this and actively promote it."

2014-07-17 - Armagh GAA speeds ahead with Northgate Vehicle Hire

Northgate Vehicle Hire in Ireland has announced an exciting new partnership with The Armagh County Board of The Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA), through the provision of a free of charge vehicle to be used to broadcast as many Armagh GAA games as possible live across the world.

With Gaelic football being the most popular sport in Ireland in terms of attendance, and following the team's success this season, Northgate's support will allow even more people to be able to watch the games throughout the 2014 season.

Darren McKinney, Sales Manager Northern Ireland, commented: "Here at Northgate Vehicle Hire we are always looking at ways to support local businesses and talent, and are very excited about this new partnership. Gaelic football is causing a real buzz across Ireland and we're looking forward to the season ahead!"

Brian Smyth, Development Officer at Armagh GAA, commented: "We are delighted to have partnered with Northgate Vehicle Hire for the 2014 season. Having a well-known and valued company such as Northgate on board will help to further raise our profile with the Gaelic football audience."

He continued: "Through the help of the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, fans across Ireland will be able to watch these fantastic games. On behalf of the whole team I'd like to thank Northgate for its support and look forward to what the new season has in store."

2014-07-10 - Northgate supports charity challenge to make wishes come true!

With Le Tour de France leaving the nation gripped with cycling fever, Northgate Vehicle Hire’s Banbury branch is supporting a challenge a little closer to home. The team at Northgate is supplying a minibus, free of charge, for a John O'Groats to Lands End charity bike ride, which is raising funds for the children's charity 'When you wish upon a star'.

The bike ride will begin on the 10th September and will last until the 17th - totaling a 920 mile journey. The team is made up of eight cyclists, who will be cycling the mammoth challenge in seven days. The team hopes to raise at least £7,200 in order send eight children with life-threatening illnesses to Lapland and make their wishes a reality.

Kam Durall, Branch Manager, said: "Here at Northgate, we are keen to help local charities and show our support within the community. We wish the team all the best with this challenge and we hope that they will continue to achieve fantastic fundraising results for these children."

Simon Storey who is leading the team said of his challenge: "I have organised three challenges and I am looking forward to this one, largely because I know the money we raise will make such a difference to the 'When you wish upon a Star' charity. It's a wonderful deserving cause that makes dreams come true for children with life threatening illnesses. I would like to thank Northgate for the donation of the vehicle, as it will play a huge part in our success."

Simon continues: "We want to raise enough money to send one child and their parent to Lapland for each day that we are riding and we hope to be identifying a family in each of the areas along the route. This will give a child and their family memories to treasure forever and will give the child a welcome distraction from hospital routines and treatment."

For more information about 'When you wish upon a Star' please visit: http://www.whenyouwishuponastar.org.uk/

2014-07-10 - Northgate keeps Watford businesses up to speed with new branch

Northgate Vehicle Hire is investing in Watford with the launch of a new branch to meet local demand for flexible vehicle hire. The launch forms part of Northgate's plans to grow its presence in the south of England and is the company's seventh site to launch in the London area.

The new site located on Rickmansworth Road, is 809 sq. ft. and will house up to 30 light commercial vehicles, from cars and CDVs to short and long wheel bases and Luton vans, the wide range and ability to access specialist vehicles and equipment ensures there are vehicles to suit the needs of all types of businesses. This new addition to the already substantial network has created eleven new jobs.

The new branch will allow the market leader in flexible vehicle hire to keep Watford businesses on the road and making money, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by providing a risk free way of acquiring and operating vehicles. The new branch also benefits from excellent links to the M25 and M1, making it easier than ever before for North London businesses to access light commercial vehicles.

Ian Wright, Northgate's Watford Sales Manager, commented: "When it comes to renewing vehicles, businesses in the Watford area can now experience flexible vehicle hire, enabling them to operate a fleet that delivers 100 percent utilization and no risk. The flexibility we offer provides North London companies with all the benefits of purchase and contract hire, but with none of the risk, as customers have the ability to add, remove or change vehicles without penalty. Regardless of whether they operate one, one hundred or one thousand vehicles. Furthermore, developments in our product offering means we can help businesses stay on the road longer and access vehicles quicker than anyone else in the vehicle rental industry."

Ian continued: "It is this offering and the success of other recently opened branches in the London area, that makes us confident that the Watford branch will hugely benefit London businesses."

The Watford branch, led by Branch Manager Matt Dyehouse, will feature our fully inclusive business rates and competitive daily hire rates will also be on offer to the general public. Northgate has seen recent success in the south of England after the launch of its radio campaign – Down to Northgate.

2014-07-02 - Vehicle hire firm helps Richmond House School children raise over £2,000

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Pudsey branch has helped the 'Richmond Riders' raise over £2,000 for Children with Cancer UK. The market leader in flexible vehicle hire provided a free of charge support vehicle to the team of twenty bike riders, aged eight to fourteen, to help them complete the 45-mile coast-to-coast bike ride.

Northgate's support has helped students from Richmond House School in Leeds to raise money for a charity which has played a huge part in supporting of one of their pupils who was diagnosed with bone cancer at the age of seven. Pupils who took part in the charity cycle on 14th June faced some tough weather conditions, but their determination saw them raise over £2,000 to date, with more donations being made everyday.

2014-07-02 - Local business makes £20,000 investment in Luton

Luton-based Northgate Vehicle Hire has invested more than £20,000 into creating a new Workshop branch on Cosgrove Way, in a bid to further strengthen the company's offering in the Luton area.

The new workshop will be able to offer servicing and maintenance for vehicles ranging from car-derived vans (CDVs) to a variety of 7.5 tonne vehicles. The new facilities will hugely benefit Northgate customers, as the team will now be able to perform service and maintenance jobs on site, rather than rely on other Northgate Workshop facilities close by. Enhancing the customer experience by minimising vehicle downtime.

Anthony Hockaday, who has worked for Northgate for the past 10 years, will head up the new workshop. Anthony has a great deal of experience, from working with family run companies to major dealerships and more recently working for Northgate in Milton Keynes.

Mark Robinson, the Northgate Branch Manager said: "We are delighted to have this addition to our facilities, as it will enable Northgate to offer an improved servicing package to all Luton customers. I am very excited about the constant growth and expansion of the Luton branch, as we've seen a huge demand from local businesses over the past year."

He continued: "We are continuing the development of the workshop adding capacity in future due to the success and customer demands experienced so far".

Anthony Hockaday said: "I am looking forward to heading up the new workshop and working with the team at Northgate and indeed our customers. It's an exciting time to join the Luton branch, indeed Northgate plc, as it is a growing and expanding business and I can't wait to play a more active role in this."

2014-06-04 - Vehicle hire firm promotes road safety to local schools

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Norwich branch has donated over 60 high visibility vests to two local schools in Norwich and Great Yarmouth. Northgate donated the vests to Ormesby Village Infant School and Falcon Middle School to help maximise safety for children choosing to walk to and from school in the local area.

2014-06-02 - Northgate invests in Leicester with branch relocation

Due to the success of its existing branch, Northgate has invested in Leicester with the launch of a new branch. Based in Cossington, the new site offers larger facilities, which will help to meet a growing demand for the national fleet provider.

Located off Syston Road on Charnwood Edge Business Park, Northgate's new branch will see local businesses across Loughborough, Birstall, Melton Mowbray and Leicester City benefit from the company's flexible vehicle hire offering. The new branch, which is conveniently located next to the A46, with access to the M1 and the A6, forms part of Northgate's plans to expand further and build on recent success, by providing flexible vehicle hire to many more businesses in the local area.

The new branch features a range of services to help the growing fleet size in the area, particularly amongst businesses operating in the construction, retail and wholesale industries, and will eventually house up to 1,700 vehicles. Northgate is also rolling out workshop facilities at the new site, which will be serviced by three qualified technicians.

Steve Hanna, Northgate Leicester's Branch Manager, commented: "The new Cossington branch is situated in a convenient location for local businesses, which will help us to service the needs of companies across a number of key locations. We have experienced a rise in demand for our flexible services over recent years, and it is this that has prompted us to relocate to the north of the city and open larger premises."

He continued: "The area has a strong business presence, with a significant number of both large and small businesses in the area in need of flexible vehicle hire. We are confident that our impressive new facilities and flexible offering will ensure the future success of the branch."

In addition to its workshop facilities, the Leicester branch will feature contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers and designated hire desk staff. Fully inclusive business rates, competitive daily hire rates will also be on offer to the general public.

2014-05-30 - Northgate Vehicle Hire appoints Asset Procurement Director

Northgate Vehicle Hire has appointed Mark Goss as Asset Procurement Director as the company sets to expand and build upon its significant growth plans. Mark will be responsible for Northgate's UK asset procurement strategy and all related purchases across its network of 69 branches.

Previously working as Head Of Best Practice, Procurement And Asset Management for energy giant EON, Mark has a wealth of experience in developing, managing and optimising procurement systems. Having worked with the company for almost nine years, Mark was responsible for a team of over 85 people supporting EON's procurement transformation in both the UK and Sweden. Mark's new role at Northgate will see him draw on this experience as he heads up asset related purchases associated with Northgate's 55,000 strong fleet of vehicles.

Mark commented on his new position: "Northgate's growth strategy is exciting to say the least. Joining the company at this critical growth period provides me with a unique opportunity to shape the company's vehicle associated assets. There is obviously a huge challenge accompanying the new role, however I feel my industry experience places me in a strong position to take charge of Northgate's mission critical product and focus on the management of inbound supply; with a view to support growth, process improvement and the introduction of new technologies."

Mike Willink, Supply Chain and Business Development Director for Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Mark has a wealth of industry experience; his proven track record and clear ability to lead a team and structure improvements means this appointment is well deserved. There have been many changes throughout the company in recent years, with a particular focus on investment in our systems, people and infrastructure. Mark's appointment complements this activity and ensures our continued focus on the delivery of a quality service, as we grow our business."

2014-05-30 - Northgate launches in Wimbledon as part of extensive London growth plan

Having revealed extensive Greater London growth plans, Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, has announced the opening of a new branch in Wimbledon. The launch sees Northgate secure a presence in the Wimbledon area for the first time and forms the next phase of the company's growth across the capital.

Situated on Plough Lane, Northgate's new branch will see local businesses across Wimbledon Village and Town, Kingston upon Thames, Wandsworth, Mitcham and Sutton benefit from the company's flexible vehicle hire offering - helping to meet the demand for a national commercial fleet provider within the area. The new branch will also deliver 11 new jobs to the area.

Housing over 40 vehicles at any one time, the branch features a range of vehicle rental services designed to help local businesses that have a requirement for long or short term vehicle hire, whether it is one, one hundred or one thousand vehicles.

Michael Johnson, Northgate Wimbledon's Branch Manager, commented: "Our new Wimbledon branch falls within the London Borough of Merton, which has a population of 200,500 people. As an affluent suburb of London, with a thriving SME business community, the area is identified as one of 35 major centres in Greater London - providing us with a unique opportunity to deliver our flexible fleet offering in an area in need of quality commercial vehicle hire from a national supplier."

He continued: "In addition, Wimbledon is home to the headquarters of a number of large energy companies, such as Esso UK and EDF Production UK, and has over 100 industrial, trade and business parks in and around a 20-minute drive time zone. Northgate has a wealth of experience in dealing with these industries, making our competitive packages all the more appealing and relevant for local business owners. We are confident that this, paired with our impressive new facilities and flexible offering, will ensure the success of the new Wimbledon branch."

The Wimbledon branch will also feature contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers, with designated hire desk staff and access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles. In addition to the opening deals on offer to local businesses, the recent introduction of Northgate's retail hire offering allows the general public to benefit from extremely competitive daily hire rates on both cars and vans.

2014-05-30 - Northgate Vehicle Hire makes significant investment in Banbury

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Banbury branch invests further into the local area with the launch of a newly refurbished site and the appointment of experienced Branch Manager Kam Durall. The investment will help to meet the demand for a national fleet provider within the area.

The appointment will see Kam build on Northgate's reputation for flexibility and excellent customer service in Banbury, to spearhead further growth in the local area. Previously Superstore Branch Manager at Comet Plc, Kam has a proven track record of delivering quality retail and business solutions.

The investment in the branch refurbishment has seen improved customer and employee facilities introduced, and now features a comfortable reception room for workshop and rental customers, a team of 15 members of staff and a fleet of almost 300 fuel-efficient vehicles.

On his new appointment, Kam commented: "I'm thrilled to be joining Northgate as Branch Manager for Banbury. It is a great time to be joining the company due to the rapid pace of change and significant growth it is currently experiencing. I intend to put my many years of experience behind the position to ensure the branch delivers a quality service to our customers and that local businesses are aware of the flexible offering Northgate can deliver."

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Area Operations Manager, Graham Edden, commented: "Kam has both enthusiasm and experience, leaving us confident that he will help drive development in the area and deliver flexible fleet solutions for Banbury businesses. The branch is performing extremely well – the investment in Kam's appointment and the refurbishment is testimony to this success."

Davinder Rai also celebrated a promotion at the branch this month, from Vehicle Technician to Workshop Foreman, following ten years with the company.

2014-05-30 - Expanding vehicle hire company launches second site in Dublin

Northgate Vehicle Hire is investing in the south of Dublin with a new branch to meet local demand for flexible vehicle hire. The launch forms part of Northgate's plans to grow its presence across Ireland and is the company's second site in the capital.

Located on Sandyford Industrial Estate, the new branch sees Northgate sit alongside major local employers Microsoft and Vodafone and is based off Junction 13 on the M50 motorway. Just 18 miles from Northgate’s existing Dublin branch, the site extends the Northgate network, giving easy access to its flexible hire product to even more local businesses interested in efficient fleet solutions.

The area is already home to businesses in IT, Telecoms and Retail, and Northgate has also seen demand from the local agricultural and construction sectors, as well as property and facilities management companies. The new site is 4,700 sq. ft. and will house up to 30 vehicles with a mix to suit the needs of all types of businesses, including commercial vehicles of varying sizes and specifications.

Jason Mulchahy, Northgate's Sandyford Sales Manager, commented: "Both our short and long-term hire is popular with Dublin businesses and has seen our Irish operation go from strength to strength over the past 12 months. Our products are designed to help local businesses operate agile fleets that are flexible enough to adjust to changes in business activity. The flexibility we offer provides Irish companies with all the benefits of purchase and contract hire, but with none of the risk, as customers have the ability to add, remove or change vehicles without penalty. Regardless of whether they operate one, one hundred or one thousand vehicles. The popularity of our products has necessitated the need for an additional branch so that we can penetrate the local area more efficiently."

Jason continued: "In addition to the non-contractual nature of our product, customers also benefit from fully inclusive servicing and maintenance, and 24, 7, 365 breakdown, so fleet operators can budget for their commercial vehicle needs without the worry of spiraling costs, or the hassle of being off the road. We are confident this approach will continue to help local businesses operate more efficiently."

The Sandyford branch, led by Branch Supervisor Gary Rooney, will feature contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers and designated hire desk staff. As well as our fully inclusive business rates, competitive daily hire rates will also be on offer to the general public.

2014-05-29 - Northgate Vehicle Hire saves Britain money with full force fleet!

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, has announced a new partnership with Save Britain Money following a period of expansion for the company. The partnership sees the money saving services provider increase the number of vehicles hired from Northgate with a 30-fleet flexible hire deal.

Save Britain Money has seen a rise in demand in its products from UK consumers since its appearance on BBC Three documentary The Call Centre in 2013, as a result its fleet of Northgate vehicles has almost doubled in size, increasing from 16 Peugeot Bippers in 2013 to a 31 strong light commercial vehicle fleet today, consisting of 23 Peugeot Bippers, seven Ford Transits and one Mercedez-Benz Sprinter.

Felix Beltran, Area Sales Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire, comments: "This is a very successful partnership to be a part of as Save Britain Money is very much seen as a consumer champion. We have been delighted to have been able to assist the company in its rapid growth - providing Save Britain Money the agility to respond to changes in fleet demand, without charges for ordering or returning vehicles being incurred."

Nev Wilshire, Founder and CEO of Save Britain Money, commented: "Our mission at Save Britain Money is to increase the disposable income of consumers across the UK through saving money on products and services. Our mission to find the most cost effective products and services is reflected in our own ethos as a business; Northgate has provided the most cost efficient and flexible service for our fleet needs, which are now expanding rapidly."

2014-05-28 - Northgate Broxburn donates van to support Help for Heroes

Northgate Vehicle Hire is donating one of its vans to a man taking part in an extreme endurance expedition to support Help for Heroes. The van will accompany Nick Hancock on his Rockall Solo Expedition in the Outer Hebrides, where he will sit alone on a rock for 60 days and 60 nights to raise money for the charity.

Northgate has donated an extra large four-meter Mercedes-Benz Sprinter to Nick to help him complete the challenge. The van will be used to transport all of Nick's equipment and kit to and from Rockall, and will stay on the island with him throughout the duration of the expedition.

Nick Hancock, Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and Rockall Solo challenger, commented: "As I come from a military family background, Help for Heroes is a charity which is very close to my heart. I have been planning this expedition since 2009 and, with all of my training and the fantastic support I have received to date, I feel as though I can beat the current record by a challenging 20 days and nights."

Tim Dobinson, Branch Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire in Broxburn, commented: "Northgate is thrilled to be able to support Nick in his inspirational challenge, which is for such a great cause. Nick has really dedicated a lot of his time to this expedition so we wanted to make his journey there and back as stress free as possible. As a mountain leader, I'm sure Nick will have no problems with this adventure and we wish him the very best of luck."

The current Rockall Solo record stands at 40 days and 40 nights and Nick hopes to beat this. Nick has prepared for the challenge by building his strength through regular exercise to ensure he is able to lift all of his kit and equipment. Nick will return with the Northgate van in August once he has completed the expedition.

Nick has already raised just short of £4,000 for the charity. To further support Nick on his journey, donations can be made via the Rockall Solo Just Giving page by visiting www.justgiving.co.uk/rockallsolo. All funds raised will be donated to the Help for Heroes charity.

2014-05-27 - Northgate Vehicle Hire appoints Head Of Customer Support

Northgate Vehicle Hire has appointed Louise Walton as Head Of Customer Support in a bid to further strengthen the company's customer support network.

Previously working as a UK Sales manager in the insurance industry for over five years, Louise has a wealth of experience in managing and optimising customer support services. Responsible for all inbound and outbound customer service calls, Louise starts her new role armed with the expertise to strengthen communication channels within Northgate with the ultimate objective of providing customers with fast and flexible access to the 55,000 strong fleet of light commercial vehicles.

Louise commented on her new position: "Joining the company at this exciting time provides me with a unique opportunity to strengthen the relationship between our network of branches and our dedicated Customer Support Centre. Strengthening these communication channels will help us to deliver a more efficient service for our customers - as a rapidly changing national company we place a strong focus on customer service delivery and continuous improvement within this area."

She continued: "Historically, with a company of Northgate's size, there is some separation between branches, customers and head office; I will be focusing on building synergy and quality customer care across the company as a whole."

2014-05-08 - Northgate reacts to construction boom with launch of 'Ready To Rent' specialist vehicles

With the construction industry reporting January to be its eighth-month of consecutive growth, Northgate has launched several new vehicle products to the market, tailored specifically to service the growth in demand. The new range of vehicles has been customised to meet the needs of businesses within the construction and highway maintenance industries that require quick access to custom vehicles for legislative and contract purposes.

The new vehicle product features include utility specification vans - with car-derived vans, long-wheel-base vans, single cab tippers and crew cab tippers made customisable based on vehicle size. The flexibility of the new vehicle product, which is 'Ready To Rent' across four key locations within the UK at any one time, allows construction businesses to access tailored vehicles with specialist equipment such as beacons, chevrons, tow bars and racking; providing companies with vehicles that are fit for purpose quickly and efficiently.

With Chapter Eight legislation requiring chevrons and beacons to feature on vehicles in certain working environments, such as by the roadside, the new offering allows construction and highway maintenance companies to access utility specification vehicles in no time at all. The product also provides access to specialist livery, which is required to meet UK visibility and safety regulations.

Ian Eccles, UK Asset Manager at Northgate, commented: "This unique service allows customers working within the construction or highway maintenance industries access to a convenient and fast supply of fit for purpose vehicles. Historically, adding this type of specification on request could take many days, time that our customers often don't have when commencing a new project. We have made a commitment to always have a 'Ready To Rent' utility specification vehicle available at four locations across our UK network, which allows for the same fulfilment within a 25 mile radius of those sites."

Ian continued: "The branches we are using as hubs for this service include Bolton, Cannock, Luton and Scunthorpe, which allows us to achieve national supply with next day delivery. And if all of our utility vehicles are hired, we'll customise another immediately, ensuring we are in constant supply. The introduction of this service is due to the demand from our customers within these industries. To date it is proving extremely popular, and as the construction industry continues to thrive, we anticipate that the demand for this unique offering will grow with it."

The amenity is being offered as part of Northgate's flexible and hassle free hire, which allows businesses to lease customised vehicles within three to five working days and return them at short notice - removing the need for costly and time consuming customised ordering or purchasing.

Morrison Utility Services, one of the UK's leading utility providers, has already taken advantage of these specialist vehicles. Michael Payne, Vehicle Controller for Externally Hired Vehicles at Morrison, commented on the benefits of hiring with Northgate: "The 'Ready To Rent' vehicles supplied by Northgate have been a great asset to our business. The specification, which includes a tow bar, beacons, chevrons, and half-side of racking as standard, has been well received by our sites and teams around the UK."

Michael continued: "We have ordered over 50 of these vehicles from across the range, which includes car derived vans, tippers, and 3.5tonne utility vans. The vast majority of the vehicles are new and stock can be drawn from various branches around the UK; this means hires can be accepted and vehicles dispatched in very short time periods."

Kirsty Vaughan Gray, Vehicle Coordinator at Morrison Utility Services, commented: "The vehicles are usually 'spot' hired to cover breakdowns and new starters. The other benefit of using these types of vehicles is the automated paperwork, as on hires and importantly off hires can be easily tracked by using this system."

She continued: "This has proven to be a success for our vehicle hire department. Our business is very fluid, and to have this system in place has been hugely beneficial to us. The response times from the original hire request to confirmation of hire and then the onward delivery have been impressive."

In addition to the utility specification vehicles, Northgate has recently added Welfare Vans to its fleet. Welfare Vans effectively provide a mobile staff room for anyone with a transient workforce. Ford Transit 350's have been converted into comfortable rest areas with all-important heating, eating, hot water, cleaning and toilet facilities.

This type of conversion normally takes many weeks to complete and at great expense. As part of the Northgate fleet, customers can now access these vehicles quickly and cost effectively, with no contract - allowing customers with changeable and short term needs to benefit from a full range of specialist vehicles for any type of project.

2014-05-08 - Northgate Vehicle Hire helps Maidstone United get back in the game!

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Snodland branch has recently announced a new partnership with Maidstone United Football Club which sees the market leader in flexible vehicle hire become the latest big business to support the local football club.

With the help of local businesses such as Northgate, Maidstone United returned to the county town in July 2012 after ground sharing at Ashford and Sittingbourne. The homecoming has been a phenomenal success with the Gallagher Stadium regularly attracting crowds of more than 2,000.

The partnership includes the sponsorship of the stadium turnstiles (now named 'The Northgate Turnstiles'), pitch side banners, and sponsorship across all marketing literature - including the club website and social media pages. The sponsorship activity will help to support the club's Under 21s team and The Maidstone United Football Academy.

Maidstone United Football Club CEO, Bill Williams, commented: "We're delighted that Northgate Vehicle Hire has become an official partner; we are thrilled to have such a well-established national company on-board. Attracting a reputable sponsor like Northgate is a great endorsement and the company's support has been a real benefit to the future of the club."

Tara Cullen, Branch Manager for Northgate's Snodland branch, commented: "We have a strong association with the Snodland area, so teaming up with Maidstone United Football Club made perfect sense. As a fan of the football club, we look forward to seeing the partnership develop throughout the seasons."

2014-05-08 - Driving up donations! Northgate Vehicle Hire supports KEMP Hospice

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Kidderminster branch is helping KEMP Hospice to collect vital clothing and furniture donations from the local community. The market leader in vehicle hire and fleet management has donated a van, free of charge, to the local hospice to enable them to collect and transport clothing and furniture donations provided by local businesses

The hospice, which offers specialist care and support to patients, families and carers who are dealing with life limiting illness and bereavement, provides its services free of charge and requires £940,000 a year to continue funding this vital work. Northgate's van donation will free up valuable voluntary hours and resource for the hospice's fundraising team.

Conrad Smith, Branch Manager at Northgate's Kidderminster branch, commented: "We are very passionate about supporting local causes; so we're pleased to be helping KEMP Hospice to collect the vital donations. Support of local businesses is essential to ensure the charity continues to deliver the valuable services they provide for the patients and families of the hospice."

Kevin Hateley, Fundraising Manager at KEMP Hospice, said: "We are really grateful to Northgate for allowing us to utilise their facilities. It is always uplifting when the local community comes together to help a worthy cause. All of our services are provided free of charge and are delivered by a skilled clinical team."

Kevin continued: "We heavily rely on donations from the local community to allow us to continue our services. Without the use of one of Northgate's vans, we would really struggle to collect the donations from local businesses."

2014-04-11 - Local cycle team calls on Northgate Ireland for vital support

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, has announced its Dublin, Limerick and Cork branches as the latest sponsors of Cycling For Sick Children. Northgate has supported the team with a donation of €1,200, as well as donating branded jerseys and three vehicles with livery for the charity’s latest fundraiser.

Earlier this month, Cycling For Sick Children embarked on a 300 kilometer bike ride between County Limerick and Cork, which lasted over two days. John Murphy, one of the Northgate Sales team took part in the event, which raised money for the research of Ohdo Syndrome. Founders of Cycling For Sick Children, Stacey and Liam Mulcahy, have a five-year-old daughter, Sophie Mulcahy, who is one of only 30 known suffers of the disease in the world. Liam commented: "I'd like to thank Northgate Vehicle Hire for all of the help and support it has shown to Cycle for Sick Children. It is so important to raise awareness of these life-threatening diseases, which we currently know so little about. We are determined to raise the profile of Sophie's story and Ohdo Syndrome."

Pictured above: Peter Millen General Manager of Northgate Vehicle Hire Ireland, Paul Kimmage, Liam Mulcahy

2014-04-01 - Northgate shows heart to UK's children

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Exeter branch has helped to raise awareness of the 1.5 million neglected children in the UK. The market leader in flexible vehicle hire teamed up with Kids Company and The UK Hand Knitting Association last month by donating a free of charge van, to support the charity's Heartsease campaign.

The Kids Company team encourage the nation to knit small heart-shaped bags last month - to represent all of the children in the UK who are in need of help and support. Northgate's free of charge vehicle is being used to transport thousands of these heart shaped bags, which contain messages and presents, across the UK to underprivileged children aged three to eight years old and currently receiving support from the charity.

Pictured above: Belinda Harris- Reid, Ruth Morris and Gary Lynn (Branch Manager at Northgate's Exeter Branch) For more information on Northgate Vehicle Hire please visit www.northgatevehiclehire.co.uk. For more information on Kids Company and the Heartsease campaign please visit www.kidsco.org.uk.

2014-03-12 - Ready, set, go! Northgate announces partnership with Irish rally team

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible hire and fleet management, has announced its Dublin branch as the latest sponsor of Donagh Kelly Rallying - as the team launches into the 2014 Irish Tarmac Rally Championship.

Rallying in Ireland is a highly popular sport, with over 100,000 spectators expected to flock to the 2014 European Championship Circuit of Ireland this year. The partnership will see Northgate support the rally team through the Irish Tarmac Championship 2014, which runs from February to October 2014. The Northgate logo will be prominent on the Donagh Kelly Rallying racing car - the Ford Focus WRC 2008 - as well as branded team clothing for crew, mechanics, personnel, sponsors and guests.

Peter Millen, Director at Northgate's Dublin branch, commented: "Here at Northgate Vehicle Hire, we are always looking at ways to support local businesses and the community, and are very excited about this new and exciting partnership. Donagh Kelly Rallying has been very successful in previous competitions, coming second in the 2013 Championships; we’re looking forward to the exciting season ahead!"

Donagh Kelly, of Donagh Kelly Rallying, commented: "We are delighted to have partnered with Northgate Vehicle Hire for the 2014 season. Having a well-known and valued company such as Northgate on board will help to further raise our profile with the Rally Championships audience."

He continued: "Events such as the 2014 Irish Tarmac Rally Championships would not be possible without such support. On behalf of the whole team I'd like to thank Northgate for its support and look forward to what the new season has in store."

2014-02-19 - Northgate apprentices see success on Ford Masters Apprenticeship Programme

20 young Northgate apprentices have been successfully awarded with prestigious Technical Certificates this week, for completing their Level 3 frameworks as part of the Ford Masters Apprenticeship Programme. The programme, which was first launched in September 2010, demonstrates Northgate's commitment to supporting its young employees in their growth and development within the company.

The award presentation, which took place at Northgate’s Customer Service Centre in Darlington, celebrated the apprentices’ achievements and marked the success of the first Ford training programme partnership with an industry client. All of the apprentices were awarded with the Level 3 Diploma in Light Vehicle Repair Principles and Light Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Competence.

Two of the Northgate apprentices studying on the programme also received additional awards –to recognise the students' commitment and outstanding progress throughout the programme. 22-year-old Michael Harley, who works in Northgate's Milton Keynes branch, was presented with the Special Award for a consistent demonstration of Northgate values throughout his study. 20-year-old Craig Wilson, a mechanic who is now in his fourth year of the apprenticeship with Northgate's Broxburn branch, was also awarded with the Apprentice of the Programme accolade for consistently achieving an average score of over 92% in his academic studies.

Craig Wilson commented: "I have really enjoyed the work based method of learning, being hands on has meant I have learnt skills that will really help me progress. The fact that at the end of the programme I have secured professionally recognised qualifications means I will have massively increased my chances of working within the trade. Through hard work, commitment and with the support of the team at Northgate, I have been able to achieve consistently high scores throughout the course - I feel very proud to have been nominated as Apprentice of the Programme!"

Ian Dunn, Head of Training at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Northgate works hard to offer its employees with the very best development opportunities. Partnering with the Ford Masters Apprenticeship Programme has enabled us to offer young people a unique and valuable opportunity to gain skills, qualifications and experience within the industry."

Ian continued: "It was fantastic to watch the 20 apprentices receive their awards. A further 13 trainees have joined the Ford Masters Apprenticeship Programme and are due to complete the qualification in the coming months and we look forward to celebrating their success very shortly."

Mark Armitage, Director of College Delivery at Skillnet, said: "I'd like to congratulate the first group of students from our first fleet partnership for completing the programme. We are delighted that Northgate recognises the value in training its workforce to the highest standards and look forward to presenting the company's 13 current apprentices with their Technical Certificates in 2016."

The Ford Masters Apprenticeship Programme is managed and co-ordinated for Ford by Skillnet limited and is an approved apprenticeship scheme - providing hands on experience for interns to work across a variety of dealerships.

2014-02-14 - Northgate supports Surrey's communities with flood relief

Northgate Vehicle Hire's Egham branch has responded to the devastating flood damage across Surrey, with the donation of a free of charge vehicle to help support flood victims. The vehicle has been donated to the Egham, Hythe & Pooley Green Flood Relief charity in a bid to support and comfort the local residents that are currently stranded in their homes due to floodwater.

The Egham, Hythe & Pooley Green Flood Relief charity is working in conjunction with Northgate, St Paul's Church and TW18 - Egham High's charity - to provide relief to hundreds of local citizens whose homes have been destroyed in the floods. The vehicle is being used to transport much needed food and supplies for local residents choosing to remain in their homes as an alternative to evacuation.

Donna Shields, Hire Desk Manager at Northgate's Egham Branch, commented: "The floods have brought much devastation to the local area and we were keen to show our support to the community in some way. The Egham, Hythe & Pooley Green Flood Relief charity is delivering a vital resource to our community during this distressing time; we were more than willing to help them provide the much needed food and supplies our local community needs."

Pooley Green, Egham, Hythe & Pooley Green Flood Relief Volunteer, commented: "The local area needs all the support it can get at the moment; we're calling on other businesses to help us combat the floods and support our community where possible. A big thanks to Northgate for its donation, the vehicle will be a huge help in our mission to support those living in flood damaged homes within the area."

2014-02-03 - Northgate plc receives accreditation for its commitment to health and safety

Northgate plc, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, has been awarded the prestigious OHSAS 18001 status, a British standard for occupational health and safety management systems, for its continued commitment to health and safety.

As an internationally recognised standard, the OHSAS 18001 assists organisations in managing and controlling health and safety risks, thus improving overall safety performances. The new certification demonstrates to employees, customers and stakeholders that Northgate holds CSR as key to the success of its operation, as well as enabling Northgate to effectively balance between reducing workplace hazards and boosting employee moral.

Colin Gilstin, Group Health, Safety and Environment Manager at Northgate, commented: "Achieving the OHSAS 18001 accreditation is testament to Northgate's ongoing commitment to improving health and safety performance across the business and making our workplaces safer for all of our employees. The accreditation gives us a solid platform on which to continue to raise the bar in health and safety standards, not just for employees but for our customers too."

Colin continued: "We are delighted to have achieved the OHSAS 18001 status, this accreditation was first introduced in 1999 and requires organisations to assess risks and implement an effective occupational health and safety management system to promote a safe and healthy working environment. This accreditation also supplements the ISO 14001 accreditation we achieved two years ago for our environmental management system and controls to protect the environment. Both accreditations are testament to the hard work of our operations team."

Jennifer Appleton, Operations Director for ISO Quality Services Ltd., commented: "Northgate plc has already shown great commitment to its ISO 14001 Environmental Standard, and it is a pleasure to see this large organisation embracing the opportunity to effectively protect the health and safety of its workforce by the recent implementation of the BS OHSAS 18001 Health and Safety Standard."

She continued: "The BS OHSAS 18001 System offers peace of mind to the company's employees, illustrating the manner in which they actively promote health and safety in the workplace - demonstrating Northgate offers a safe and caring environment to work within. The company's clients can also take assurance that by operating to this standard, this awareness is promoted throughout its supply chain."

2014-01-15 - Northgate Limerick relocates following its success in the West of Ireland

As part of its successful growth in the West of Ireland, Northgate has relocated its Limerick branch to help meet an increase in customer demand within the local area. The relocation forms part of Northgate's continued expansion across the country, following a 15% growth in its Irish operation last year.

Situated in the heart of Limerick next to St. John's Cathedral on Cathedral Place, Northgate’s new branch is housed in larger premises to service the growing demand for flexible vehicle hire in and around the city. The relocation will also see local companies further benefit from Northgate's hassle free and flexible fleet solution, which frees fixed capital by removing depreciating assets and any costs typically associated with an owned fleet of vehicles, such as vehicle maintenance, breakdown and recovery.

In addition to housing up to 400 vehicles, the new branch features a fully equipped workshop and caters for short, medium and long-term rentals. Local customers will also have access to further cash flow benefits, as Northgate has removed any upfront costs for companies looking to hire, allowing local business owners to order and collect vehicles on the same day without parting with any money for 30 days.

Darren McNamara, Branch Manager at Northgate Limerick, commented: "The new branch location at Cathedral Place is well situated in Limerick, allowing us to deliver our appealing and flexible vehicle hire offering to local businesses. Our growth in the West of Ireland has been very encouraging, and we are confident that the flexibility and the clear cash benefits our service offers will assist in the success of our expansion."

Darren continued: "We are welcoming all local businesses to visit our Limerick branch and discuss our flexible offering, whether as a sole solution to their fleet requirements or as part of a wider vehicle acquisition strategy, our Branch Supervisor, Cathal, and our Rental Representative, Andrew, will be on hand to discuss the range of options available."

John Murphy, local Sales Manager for Northgate, commented: "Northgate's Irish operation grew from strength to strength last year; we believe the relocation of the branch will help to maintain this growth throughout 2014. With the majority of companies operating in the Limerick area still riding the post-recession waves, the availability of capital continues to be an issue; as a result we've tailored our hassle free and flexible fleet offering to free fixed capital for our customers. No large deposit or finance application is required, therefore providing a risk free solution. This, teamed with our excellent customer service and quality vehicles, leaves me confident that the new branch will be a success."

The Limerick branch will also feature contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers, with designated hire desk staff and access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles. In addition to the benefits that the flexible vehicle hire offering can provide to businesses, the recent introduction of Northgate's retail hire offering allows the general public to benefit from extremely competitive daily hire rates on both cars and vans.

2014-01-14 - Cambridge Floral Designs saves a bunch with Northgate Vehicle Hire - and you could too

Cambridge Floral Designs, based in the heart of Cambridge and owned by husband and wife team Simon and Tanya Freeman, has teamed up with Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, to meet an increase in demand during the buoyant post recession climate. The company, which employs four members of staff and has two shops within Cambridge city, in addition to its online retail offering, hires two Volkswagen Caddy vans from Northgate and is taking advantage of its flexible hire package. The partnership includes a host of utilisation benefits for the Freemans - as there is no depreciation, no need to worry about residual value, risks are removed, and the support of the supplier is guaranteed should emergency back up or replacement vehicles be required.

The flexible offering was particularly appealing to Cambridge Floral Designs due to a rise and fall in demand in the lead up to peak periods for the business, such as Christmas and Valentine's Day, when the company can take up to 500 on the day orders in addition to advanced bookings. Simon and Tanya are utilising Northgate's flexible service to supplement their fleet by hiring more vehicles during these periods to meet demand.

Managing Director Simon Freeman says the benefits of flexible hire speak for themselves: "The floristry industry has seen a rise in activity throughout 2013, bringing with it logistical constraints as delivery demands increase. This is a notoriously tricky area for florists, as the costs of operating a fleet for an independent business can have a large impact on the bottom line; as a result I've been hesitant to purchase supplementary vehicles or enter into contract hire, which is how I operated my fleet before the recession. The flexibility Northgate provides is really what appealed to me, there is no deposit upfront and I can offload vehicles without incurring a cost, providing me with complete peace of mind. The additional vehicle wrapping services on offer was further value and made the partnership the perfect solution."

Jonathan Pearce, Head of Marketing for Northgate Vehicle Hire, explains why Northgate's flexible offering makes financial and operational sense: "Flexible hire is a popular choice amongst many industry sectors, whether as a sole solution to fleet requirements or as part of a wider vehicle acquisition strategy. With even greater popularity within sectors that experience seasonal fluctuations in activity such as the floristry industry, which experiences dramatic increases in demand before and during seasonal occasions such as Christmas, Valentine's Day and Mother's Day, having the flexibility to add to or remove vehicles from their fleet at any time without penalty could be the make or break factor."

Jonathan continued: "We have worked with Interflora to create long term and short term hire solutions that afford florists the ability to effectively respond to upturn in business activity. In particular our long term vehicle hire solution offers the necessary flexibility that florists require. We are encouraged by the positive feedback that we have received from florists such as Cambridge Floral Designs and the general interest that these products have generated. We expect orders to increase as we approach the busy festive season and suggest that if you think you may need additional vehicles to cope with customer demand this Christmas then open your account now. There is no commitment or contract it just means that you can act fast when you need to."

2014-01-02 - Northgate helps Basildon charity deliver vital food supplies

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, has supported Basildon's food bank charity, Choices Family Support Service, in its quest to encourage the local community to donate 'Tins & Things' for deprived families.

Choices Family, which is dedicated to providing free food and other vital assistance to people in the Basildon borough, has teamed up with local businesses to create a stronger more resilient local community via the 'Tins & Things' initiative. The food bank is dedicated to supporting people who are in financial difficulty and Northgate has demonstrated itssupport for the charity by providing a free of charge vehicle to transport donated goods to astorage centre on Saffron Court.

Peter Trinnaman, Store Manager at Northgate's new Basildon store, commented: "Choices Family is dedicated to supporting the local community and ensuring families that are suffering financial hardship have access to food and water.Northgate was keen to support the cause, so when the opportunity to transport the food donations presented itself, we were more that happy to provide a vehicle free of charge."

Susanna Caira-Neeso, Managing Director at Choices Family, commented: "Over recent years it has become clear that food banks are vital for many people within the Basildon community. Whether families find themselves out of long-term work or are just going through a patch of financial difficulty, we are here to support them. We are extremely grateful to Northgate for its help and would like to take this opportunity to thank the team for being so generous."

2013-12-22 - Saving lives at sea! Northgate Portsmouth helps raise £4,000 for the RNLI

On December 22nd Northgate Vehicle Hire’s Portsmouth branch supported the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) with thedonation of three vans forthe Portsmouth Coastal Waterside Marathon. The donated vehicles were used by the dedicated marathon team to transport essential water supplies to the race and later became water supply stations for those taking part in the charity event.

The fourth Portsmouth Coastal Waterside Marathon saw a record1650 people take part in thesix-hour run, from the South Parade Pier to Hayling Billy Island and back. All of the funds raised have been donated to support the RNLI, which provides an on call 24-hour lifeboat search and rescue service for the UK and Ireland, as well as a seasonal lifeguard service.

Kirsty Goble, Branch Manager at Northgate Portsmouth, commented: "We're thrilled to havesupportedthe RNLI, whichpatrols over 200 beaches across the Untied Kingdom and Channel Islands. The marathon is a fantastic cause and a great opportunity for people to do something a little different before they get stuck into Christmas. We're very impressed with the £4,000 raised and feel proud to have supported such a worthy cause with the provision of our vehicles."

RobertPiggott, of Believe and Achieve events ltd, and RNLI fundraiser,commented: "I would like to thank everybody at Northgate Vehicle Hire for the vital support they provided in the Portsmouth Coastal Waterside Marathon. The RNLI iscommitted to saving lives at sea and providing safety advice and flood rescue. Through the support oforganisationslike Northgate we are able to rescue an average of 22 people a day. This year's event was a huge success and we willcontinue to raise funds in the area into the New Year."

2013-12-04 - Northgate announces interim results for the six months ended 31 October 2013

Northgate is pleased to announce a successful first half of its financial year with underlying profit before tax up by 14% on last year to £32.0m, giving an increased basic EPS figure of 18.3p (2012 – 15.1p). The growth is attributed to the continued investment made across the group in people, systems and the network.

Focussing on growing the UK business through its existing network whilst adding new sites, and continuing to target improved returns in Spain, Northgate’s improved profitability and confidence in the long term prospects of the group has also led to an increased dividend at this interim stage, to 3.2p per share. Group net debt has increased slightly during the period (by 2%) as a result of the investment made across the group to achieve growth in both territories.

UK vehicles on hire have increased by 2,800 (6.5%) in the first half, as a result of growth from existing sites, growth from new sites opened since February 2013 and the stabilisation of the number of vehicles on hire to national customers. Return on capital employed and operating margin have reduced as planned due to lower volumes of vehicles being sold in response to improved rental demand, coupled with upfront investment relating to the start-up of new sites and the strengthening of Nortgate’s commercial and operational teams. Vehicle utilisation for the period was 88%, consistent with the year ended 30 April 2013. Whilst utilisation remains a priority for Northgate, the UK also remains focused on ensuring that each branch has the right range of vehicles available for customers at all times.

Bob Contreras, CEO of Northgate, commented: "We are pleased to see the growth achieved in the first six months of the year, following the investment that has been made in our people, systems and infrastructure. The Board remains confident that we will continue to build on this platform for growth and we continue to trade in line with our expectations."

He continued: "We will continue to identify new locations where potential customers are not effectively serviced by an accessible Northgate site and have opened two more sites in the half year (Slough and Basildon). We also opened one in November (in Charlton) and have two further sites planned to open before 30 April 2014 within the London area."

Trading conditions in Spain remain difficult, however, despite this, Northgate's operating margin decreased only slightly to 16.6% in the period (2012 – 16.8%). Vehicles on hire have increased by 1,200 in the six months to 31 October 2013 compared to a decline of 1,300 in the same period last year. Whilst the majority of this increase was driven by seasonal demand, Northgate found it encouraging to see growth in the underlying business and has seen customer numbers increase by 9% since 30 April 2013. ROCE has also improved to 8.6% in Spain and the business remains focused on further improving returns through pricing increases and customer profiling, vehicle utilisation, vehicle ageing and operational efficiencies.

2013-12-03 - Northgate helps raise funds for Motor Neurone Disease

In a bid to raise awareness and funds for Motor Neurone Disease,Northgate Vehicle Hire's Leeds branchhas donated a branded vehicle to valued customer James Wilson. The donation of the vehicle has enabled James to complete the '500miles in five days' cycle challenge raising a total of £l;2,755.16 for Motor Neurone Disease.

The donated van acted as a support vehicle and followed James on his cycle route from Scotland to West Yorkshire, across five days starting on Monday 18th November and ending on Friday 22nd November. James' father Paul Wilson, a keen cyclist who sadly passed away from Motor Neurone Disease in 2009, inspired the charity cycle ride.

James Wilson commented: "Our dad lived his life with everything he had and if he wanted to do something, he just got on with it. So I have been inspired by this attitude and feelsoproud to have achieved the '500 miles in fivedays' challenge in honour of myfather. We are delighted Northgate has supportedour charity initiative and helped us to raise vital funds for Motor Neurone Disease."

Paul Butler, Branch Manager at Northgate Leeds, commented: "James and his family have worked extremely hard to help raise awareness and funds for Motor Neurone Disease. Here at Northgate, we endeavour to help local families and businesses in charity work - it's especially rewarding when thecause is so close to our customers. We are so pleased James' cycle challenge was a success and will continue to support this cause and other charity work in the future."

To donate funds to the ‘500miles in five days’ charity fundraiser please visit www.justgiving.com/JamesWilson-1978.

2013-11-27 - Cash for Kids calls on Northgate for Christmas support

Cash for Kids, a charity established by Viking FM and Radio Aire, has called on Northgate for a second year to help deliver thousands of presents to underprivileged children this December. Mission Christmas is rolled out across Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire and provides thousands of children within the area with a present to open on Christmas morning.

Northgate's Hull branch has donated a Ford Transit van to Cash for Kids to deliver over 650,000 gifts to local children. The van, which was livered with the charity's branding free of charge by Advantage Signs, will be driving across Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire delivering the gifts from now until the end of December.

Shelley Forster, Branch Manager at Northgate Hull, commented: "There are thousands of underprivileged children across the region that would wake up without a gift to open if Cash for Kids didn't work so hard to raise awareness, funds and donations ahead of the busy festive period. We are thrilled to donate a van to this worthy cause for a second year and are encouraging everyone to support Cash for Kids to help make Christmas special for all local children."

Charlotte Pickering, Cash for Kids Executive, commented: "Thanks to Northgate's kind support, last year we were able to deliver Christmas presents to over 6,400 local children! We are aiming to do the same again, so Northgate's continued support for the charity is extremely valuable. We're asking everyone to show their support and donate wherever possible – just one donation can change Christmas for a disadvantaged child in the region."

2013-11-27 - Northgate donates £1,000 to Essex Insulation’s charity of choice

Northgate Vehicle Hire has rewarded its 1,000th 'Going for Growth' customer, Essex Insulation, with a cheque for £1,000 to be donated to its charity of choice. The donation has been made to celebrate the success of the 'Going for Growth' initiative, which has seen Northgate hire 1,000 vehicles across its five new sites around the London region.

With St. Luke's Hospice chosen as the deserving cause, both the Mayor of Basildon and Northgate's CEO, Bob Contreras, joined Essex Insulation at Northgate's Basildon branch where Contreras proudly presented the cheque to the charity on Wednesday 20th November.

The 'Going for Growth' initiative was set up by Northgate, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, which operates over 55,000 vehicles, as part of its targeted growth in the south of the UK, which has seen five new branches in Basildon, Brent Cross, Luton, Slough and Charlton launch to date, creating over 55 jobs. The initiative’s target to hire out 1,000 vans in just two months to its new southern market was exceeded earlier this month and Northgate chose to share its success with the two local organisations, highlighting its commitment to the area.

Bob Contreras, CEO of Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "The donation day was a huge success and I would like to thank everybody who attended, including Councillor Mo Larkin, the Mayor of Basildon. Northgate's Going for Growth campaign in the south of the UK has been a tremendous achievement – with over 1,000 vehicles on hire from our five new sites. I am thrilled to present the £1,000 charity donation to Essex Insulation, as it acts as an opportunity for us to thank local businesses for their continued support and to highlight our commitment to the communities in which we operate."

Cliff Eves, Operations Director at Essex Insulation, commented: "We are delighted with Northgate's donation. As a local company operating within the community, it is important that the suppliers we use have a strong commitment to the local area. Northgate's flexible approach and support for SMEs originally attracted us to use the company's services."

Cliff continued: "It is this flexibility and support, along with Northgate's generous donation to our charity of choice, that leaves me confident that Northgate's local presence will be well received by business operating within the area."

Heather Penny, Corporate Fundraiser for St. Luke's Hospice, said: "We are extremely grateful to both Northgate and Essex Insulation for the generous donation of £1,000. St. Luke’s Hospice cares for local residents whose illnesses are no longer curable, so the donated money will be used to help comfort local families during extremely difficult times. It is very encouraging to see businesses in the area showing support for our work – I speak on behalf of everyone at St. Luke's Hospice in thanking both companies."

2013-11-25 - Northgate Vehicle Hire links up with John Smith's Stadium

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire, has furthered its commitment to the local area with the announcement of a 12-month partnership with Huddersfield's John Smith's Stadium.

As an official partner, Northgate's branding will be visible across the 24,500 capacity stadium throughout the year, which welcomes fans of Huddersfield Town and Huddersfield Giants. The stadium also hosts an array of community events and representative matches including the recent 'sell out' England v Ireland Rugby League World Cup fixture.

KSDL Managing Director at John Smith's Stadium, Gareth Davies, commented: "I am very pleased to make this announcement. Northgate is a prestigious business with genuine national reach, which has recently made the move into Huddersfield. Northgate has created new employment opportunities for the local area and is working with Huddersfield businesses to help them prosper. The company clearly wants to support community activity and John Smith's Stadium welcomes its involvement."

Paul Rodney, Sales Manager at Northgate's Huddersfield branch, commented: "We are delighted to announce our partnership with Huddersfield's John Smith's Stadium and look forward to showing our support throughout the year. We have a strong association with the Huddersfield area and we work hard to ensure we work closely with local businesses and the community."

2013-11-14 - Be a Bright Van Man this winter! Northgate shows its support for this year's Road Safety Week

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire is backing road safety charity, Brake, throughout its annual Road Safety Week. The campaign, which runs from the 18th to the 24th November, will see Northgate steering drivers in the right direction by urging road users not to become distracted!

The vehicle hire company is backing the campaign with an internal initiative, which sees Northgate's Bright Van Man hitting the road once again and raising awareness via a dedicated intranet page, website page, posters and an information sheet, which are being featured across all Northgate branches within the UK and Ireland.

Colin Gilstin, Group Safety & Environment Manager at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Road Safety Week gives us an opportunity to promote to our staff and customers the dangers of attempting to multi-task whilst driving. We all know multi-tasking whilst driving increases the risk of becoming less observant and massively increases the chances of being involved in an accident. With the help of our safety mascot, Bright Van Man, we're encouraging drivers to think twice before they attempt to multi-task at the wheel and ask themselves the question – can it wait? The majority of the time, it can."

2013-11-01 - Why forecasting fleets for 2014 is essential for manufacturers

Although 2014 isn't quite here yet, businesses operating within the manufacturing industry are already planning ahead for 2014, to adequately respond to any seasonal upturn in activity. With continuing mixed reports on the economy and manufacturers recording the biggest increase in orders and output since 1994 (The Purchasing Managers' Index, September 2013), the New Year will be an undeniably tricky time for the manufacturing sector to gauge demand and react accordingly. Therefore having flexibility in their plans is essential to support the delivery of an efficient and hassle free service for their customers, which will ultimately improve profitability.

One way manufacturers can quickly and efficiently respond to the rise and fall in demand, is by introducing flexible vehicle hire to their fleet acquisition strategy; an approach that is becoming increasingly popular within the sector, especially amongst manufacturing businesses that experience seasonal fluctuations. There is also a range of additional benefits associated with outsourcing the management of a fleet via a flexible hire package, not least the opportunity to dispel maintenance costs and vehicle down time periods which are common within a wholly owned fleet. With flexible vehicle hire, businesses have the option to add or remove vehicles from their fleet at any time without penalty, allowing businesses to benefit from 100% utilisation.

Jonathan Pearce, Head of Marketing at Northgate, comments: "With future demand for vehicles remaining an area of uncertaintymanufacturering companies, flexible hire makes perfect business sense, as it brings with it a host of cost and utilisation benefits. Successful manufacturers centre their business operation around increasing output, reducing costs and managing production flexibility – this flexibility should also be reflected in a manufacturing company's vehicle acquisition methods."

"Applying flexibility to a fleet allows manufacturering businesses to meet their customer's needs without having to deal with the hassle or financial burden of purchasing, and the all-inclusive fixed fee, which covers servicing, maintenance and replacement vehicles, as well as the actual rental, is perfect for freeing time and capital to forward plan. What's more, as activity slows down and vehicles are no longer needed businesses can simply hand them back."

Jonathan continued: "It is integral that companies have access to available vehicles at a moment’s notice if they are to keep up with demand and reach their customers in a quick and efficient manner. It may only be October but we are already taking orders for the 2014."

Other benefits realised though flexible vehicle hire are the off balance sheet benefits of no exposure to depreciation of the vehicles, no need to worry about residual values and reliability risks associated with ageing fleets are removed and the support of the supplier is guaranteed should emergency back up or replacement vehicles be required.

2013-10-20 - Why the floristry industry should capitalise on fixed costs

With the British Florist Association revealing that the £1.5billion floristry industry is becoming increasingly competitive and moving into online sales, it's never been more important for florists to consider the logistical and financial needs of their business, writes Northgate Vehicle Hire's Head of Marketing, Jonathan Pearce.

With the demand for vehicles often revolving around seasonal peaks, flexible hire is a common sense decision that brings with it a host of cost and utilisation benefits. Being able to add to an existing fleet of vans in order to respond to increased demand is a key benefit of flexible hire, and one that makes it so appealing to florists whose fleet needs change through the year, most notably from December to April which are peak months for many in the trade.

Flexible hire is a popular choice amongst many industry sectors, whether as a sole solution to fleet requirements or as part of a wider vehicle acquisition strategy. And it's one that's becoming even more popular within sectors that experience seasonal fluctuations, such as the floristry industry, which experiences dramatic increases in demand before and during seasonal occasions such as Christmas, Valentine's Day and Mother's Day. Having the flexibility to add to or remove vehicles from their fleet at any time without penalty could be the make or break factor in being able to deliver to customers on time.

As businesses continue to feel the squeeze with rising vehicle running costs, such as fuel, tyres, oil and lubricants, breakdown and recovery, flexible hire can be the perfect solution for eliminating such headaches. Northgate has shown that by completely taking exposure to such costs away from the customer and eliminating worries over depreciating assets, businesses can significantly improve the financial health of their balance sheet.

Further financial benefits can be achieved through hiring thanks to improved fleet utilisation. The needs of florists change throughout the year - and the extent of this can’t always be anticipated - but the flexible element allows businesses the agility to respond to changes in business activity. There is no depreciation, no need to worry about residual value, risks are removed, and the support of the supplier is guaranteed should emergency back up or replacement vehicles be required. Really, it's a win-win situation with the constraints of contract hire completely removed.

Flexible vehicle hire is where the clear benefits lie for those who aren’t always able to forecast their fleet and want an element of ‘wiggle room’ rather than be tied down to a contract binding them to a specific number of vehicles for a certain length of time. Benefits of flexible vehicle hire include:

• The ability to control fleet costs and utilisation and forget about forecasting fleets
• Flexible hire periods, fleet sizes and vehicle sizes
• Access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles, which may have been previously unaffordable
• Freeing up budget that would otherwise be spent on purchasing vehicles
• For vehicles required on a longer term basis, customisation including tow bars, roof racks, interior racking and livery - all tailored to individual requirements

This is just a little bit of food for thought for florists thinking about re-assessing their fleet needs. But one thing's for sure; the smarter businesses out there are already taking cost-saving measures in a bid to improve business efficiency by choosing a solution that allows them to quickly respond to market conditions and the current economic climate.

One floristry business that has seen the value of Northgate's offering and sought a flexible fleet solution is Cambridge Floral Designs (www.cambridgefloraldesigns.co.uk). Based in the heart of Cambridge and owned by husband and wife team Simon and Tanya Freeman, the company has recently partnered with Northgate to meet an increase in demand during the buoyant post recession climate. The company, which employs four members of staff and has two shops within Cambridge city, in addition to its online retail offering, hires two Volkswagen Caddy vans from Northgate. In the lead up to peak periods for the business, such as Christmas and Valentine's Day, when the company can take up to 500 on the day orders in addition to advanced bookings, Simon and Tanya anticipate supplementing their fleet by hiring more vehicles to meet demand.

Managing Director Simon Freeman says the benefits of flexible hire speak for themselves: "The floristry industry has seen a rise in activity throughout 2013, bringing with it logistical constraints as delivery demands increase. This is a notoriously tricky area for florists, as the costs of operating a fleet for an independent business can have a large impact on the bottom line; as a result I've been hesitant to purchase more vehicles or enter into contract hire, which is how I operated my fleet before the recession. The flexibility Northgate provides is really what appealed to me, there is no deposit upfront and I can offload vehicles without incurring a cost, providing me with complete peace of mind. The additional vehicle wrapping services on offer was further value and made the partnership the perfect solution."

2013-10-10 - Northgate Vehicle Hire partners with Heatforce to assist with company expansion

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, which has branches in Swansea, Cardiff, Bristol, Exeter and Plymouth, has partnered with Heatforce, a heating and plumbing firm in Wales, to expand the company's fleet following a period of growth for the business.

The newly formed partnership saw Northgate initially provide Heatforce with 13 vehicles but due to its recent growth, Heatforce has since grown its Northgate fleet by an additional 16 vehicles, resulting in a total fleet size of over 100 vehicles. Northgate has provided Heatforce with a mix of LWB transit 350, Peugeot Partners and Bippers, also included in the partnership is a livery service, which ensures that Heatforce's fleet, is not only fit for purpose but fully branded whilst on the road.

Duncan Cole, Business Development Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "We work closely with our customers to ensure they operate efficient fleets and our partnership with Heatforce is a perfect example of how we can support growing businesses meet changing demand. With Northgate Vehicle Hire there are no constraints and our flexibility is often a critical factor to a mutually beneficial partnership. We look forward to continuing work with Heatforce and supporting them in their business growth."

Paul Maddocks, Managing Director at Heatforce, commented: "The service Northgate has provided has been exceptional, the flexibility of our package has been ideal for our business growth. The vehicles are always delivered promptly and to our requirements, and the service is nothing but professional, cost effective and efficient. We are always impressed by Northgate's services and hope to continue our partnership moving forward."

2013-10-10 - Northgate team treks Mount Kilimanjaro to raise vital funds for charity

A group of fearless explorers from Northgate Vehicle Hire, based in Darlington, has successfully completed a charity mission to the summit of the world's highest freestanding mountain, in a bid to raise vital funds for two local charities. The team of three climbed an impressive 4,635 metres to the mountain's 5,985-metre summit in just six days.

Taking on the challenge, which was successfully completed at the end of September, was Northgate's Building Services Administrator, Vicky Barber, AX Application Support Analyst, Chris Castle, and Project Manager, Adrian Beckett. Vicky Barber raised over £3,000 for Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity, an organisation providing emotional and practical support to families who have a child with a life threatening or terminal illness. Proceeds raised by Adrian Beckett also went towards the support and care of local girl, Evie Poole, who suffers from cerebral palsy.

The Northgate team began its mission on Friday 13th September at an altitude of 1,350 metres. Taking the challenging Machame route, the group experienced a range of seasons across the six-day trek, with temperatures ranging from humid conditions at 32 degrees in the rain forest to -10 degrees at the cold mountain summit.

Vicky Barber commented: "This has been an incredibly hard challenge for the team and I, but we are delighted that we have been able to raise vital funds for our chosen charities. The idea came about after a trip up Ben Nevis in Scotland; on reflection it's a little hill in comparison, reaching a height of just 1,334 metres. Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa and to climb it is a huge feat! I'm very proud of my team mates and feel delighted that our efforts will have such a positive effect on our chosen charities."

Holly Jenkins, Regional Fundraiser for Rainbow Trust Children's Charity, commented: "Rainbow Trust is absolutely thrilled that employees of Northgate Vehicle Hire decided to take on the enormous challenge of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise funds in support of our charity. Our vision is that one day all terminally ill children and their families will have access to a Rainbow Trust Family Support Worker. The challenge taken on by the employees at Northgate has helped us to get closer to making that vision a reality."

Jayne Poole, Evie Poole’s mother, said: "Evie's condition means that she is unable to walk independently. We were informed of treatment, which is performed on the spinal nerves to help with her mobility, but needed to raise £50,000 to make this possible. Evie, thankfully, had her operation on 19th September and is recovering brilliantly. We would like to thank everybody at Northgate from the bottom of our hearts for helping us to help Evie reach her dream of walking independently for the very first time. Without dedicated fundraisers, none of this would of been possible."

2013-10-02 - Northgate Vehicle Hire helps Majedie climb high for charity

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and fleet management, has shown its support to Majedie Asset Management with the provision of a free minibus. The minibus, which was donated by Northgate's Glasgow branch, transported the Majedie team of nine across the UK as they braved the Three Peaks Challenge.

The challenge, which took place last Friday 20th September, saw the team climb the three highest peaks in England, Scotland and Wales and raise a massive £15,000 for charity. The nine hikers, who raised funds for Tommy's, Cancer Research UK and Richard House Hospice, completed the hike in an impressive 26 hours.

Rob De La Mare, Operations Director for Majedie Asset Management, commented: "We're very grateful to Northgate Vehicle Hire's Glasgow branch for the donation of a minibus. The money saved on transportation costs has been donated to the charities, which has helped us to raise over £15,000 so far. All three charities are very close to our hearts; not only do they quite literally save lives but they also provide a vital lifeline for so many people."

Robert Knowles, Northgate Vehicle Hire's Area Operations Manger for the North East and Scotland, commented: "Northgate's Glasgow branch was thrilled to be able to support the Majedie hikers with their fundraising challenge. The team is doing a fantastic job in raising money for some very worthy charities and we wish them the best of luck with the rest of their planned charitable activities."

The event is one of ten planned charitable events organised by Majedie this year as part of the company's 10th anniversary celebrations, with the aim of raising £75,000 for charity by the end of 2013. For more information please visit: www.majedie.com/our-charities

2013-09-23 - Northgate Lostock helps Joining Jack raise over £130,000

Northgate's Lostock branch has helped a local charity raise over £130,000 by donating a fleet of support vehicles at two fundraising events, free of charge. Joining Jack, a charity established by the parents of Jack Johnson who suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) to support other children with the condition and their families, received a total of six Northgate vehicles for its two September fundraisers, the JJ100 and the Wigan 10K.

The Lostock branch donated four vehicles for the charity's JJ100 fundraiser, a 100-mile bike ride that took place on September 1st in the Manchester area. Northgate's donation helped the JJ100 team raise an impressive £77,370 for the charity. Northgate donated a further two vehicles at a second Joining Jack fundraiser,to help support participants in the Wigan 10K, an event organised by the charity in conjunction with Wigan Council and Wigan Leisure & Culture Trust, which saw residents of Wigan run ten kilometres on September 8th and raise £60,000 for the charity to date.

Alex Johnson, Jack's mother and Co-Founder of the Joining Jack charity, commented: "September has been an incredible month for Joining Jack and we are delighted to have raised such a substantial amount at the JJ100 and the Wigan 10K. We rely on the support and kindness of others to help raise vital funds for children with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. We are very grateful for Northgate's support and would like to thank the Lostock team for their help."

Andrea Cowburn, Area Operations Manager at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Joining Jack is a fantastic charity that works hard to support children with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Here at Northgate, we are always keen to help local charities and show our support within the community. We hope that Joining Jack will continue to achieve fantastic fundraising results and look forward to providing a helping hand in the future."

2013-09-20 - Recovering Irish economy attracts Northgate to Cork's network of national businesses

Cork's commercial economy, which accounts for nearly 10% of the Republic of Ireland's business turnover, has attracted another national business to its portfolio of leading companies operating within the city's commercial and industrial network. Northgate Vehicle Hire, market leader in flexible vehicle hire, is relocating to Kinsale Road, situated in the heart of Cork's industrial and business development arena.

Northgate's relocation from Ballytrasna, on Little Island, to the south of Cork demonstrates the company's commitment to the local area, with plans in place to employ three additional team members from the local area by January 2014. Northgate also plans to double the initial 100-vehicle fleet based at the branch within just 12 months.

The new branch, which launched this week, spans across 4,500 sq. ft. and will offer capacity for 50 commercial vehicles on-site as well as valeting features. The site will also provide Northgate with high visibility within the local area and an increased opportunity to service the vehicle needs of businesses, both large and small operating in and around Cork, with improved accessibility.

Peter Millen, General Manager for Northgate's Irish operation, commented: "Cork is home to many international companies and a huge diversity of local businesses, including Pfizer, Novartis, GlaxoSmithKline, Eli Lily, Schering Plough, Apple Inc., Boston Scientific and Stryker, to name but a few. This, teamed with the area's recovering economy and huge demand for flexible vehicle hire, provides Northgate with a unique commercial opportunity to service the needs of businesses operating in and around Cork. Our ambition, within the current economic client, is to grow our ability to provide flexible hire for companies in what can sometimes be an uncertain market place."

Darren McNamara, Branch Manager for Northgate Cork, said: "Our new Cork site provides us with great access to the city, high visibility and will operate in the heart of the industrial area in Cork. As a result, we are now in a position to offer our low cost and low risk fleet solution to local businesses. Northgate is now also offering competitive short term rental to the general public and businesses with short term hire available from €49 complete with full insurance."

Darren continued, "The new branch is within just two miles of Cork International Airport, which is ideal for local companies that have international business links. Our new customer waiting area will also allow us to discuss fleet requirements with businesses, which will help us to tailor our flexible hire offering to meet their exact needs. We are extremely confident about the unique offering we can now provide and welcome companies of all sizes to visit our new branch to discuss their fleet needs."

The Cork branch features contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers, with designated hire desk staff and access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles from leading manufacturers like Ford, Mercedes Benz Volkswagen and Peugeot. In addition to the opening deals on offer to local businesses, such as commercial vehicle hire packages starting from under €70 per week, the recent introduction of Northgate's personal hire offering allows the general public to benefit from extremely competitive daily hire rates on both cars and vans.

2013-09-17 - And they're off! Northgate team members raise over £1,500 at Great North Run

Amongst the crowd of over 56,000 professional runners, fundraisers and enthusiasts at this year's Great North Run were Northgate Vehicle Hire's Natalie Simmons, Jon Lapworth, Danielle Kelly and Tim Walker. The dedicated team, which has been in training for the 13.1mile race since January 2013, raised an impressive £1,570 for their efforts.

Natalie Simmons, Senior Marketing Executive at Northgate, completed the race in an impressive two hours 12 minutes and raised funds for Cancer Research UK, whilst Jon Lapworth, who works in the Daily Rental unit in Northgate's Customer Support Centre, clocked in at one hour 58 minutes and collected for Children with Cancer UK. Danielle Kelly and Tim Walker, from Northgate's Damage & Recharge team within the Customer Support Centre, also completed the race in two hours 38 minutes and two hours 10 minutes, with all funds raised donated to Diabetes UK.

Natalie commented: "I feel incredibly privileged to have taken part in this year's Great North Run and raised funds for charity. I speak on behalf of other Northgate colleagues when I say that such events take a lot of time and dedication in terms of physical preparation and the fund raising activity that goes with it. Cancer Research UK is a charity very close to my heart, and I know my colleagues have close links to their chosen charities too. I'd like to congratulate the team and thank Northgate colleagues for their support in helping me raise £570 for my chosen charity."

Jonathan Pearce, Head of Marketing at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Northgate employees historically have been extremely committed to supporting charitable events and the Great North Run is no exception. It is an event that always sees participation by Northgate employees, which is a reflection of the extensive amount of charitable activities that Northgate employees take part in right across the UK and throughout the year."

2013-09-13 - Northgate Vehicle Hire donates Elephant Water Pump to Zimbabwe

Leading provider of flexible vehicle hire and fleet management, Northgate Vehicle Hire, has donated an Elephant Water Pump to a village in Zimbabwe. Through changing its supplier of water coolers to Aquaid, who supports Christian Aid and The Africa Trust, Northgate is now able to provide essential financial support to these charitable organisations.

These charities believe in giving less fortunate communities the tools to build a sustainable and better quality of life. Northgate has chosen to support these charities due to their pro-active approach in making a difference.

Colin Gilstin, Head of Health, Safety and Environment at Northgate, said: "We are delighted to be able to support the fantastic work that Aquaid bring to developing nations. Through consolidating our water supply to one National supplier we are not only able to make cost savings but are also able to donate life-changing equipment that will further improve the quality of life for others."

John Barrie, Regional Manager at WaterAid, commented: "By using Aquaid as their water supplier, our customers have helped us donate over £6.5 Million to our chosen charities. This has not only given thousands of people and villages a better quality of life through Elephant Pumps, sanitation solutions and sustainable business projects, but also allows our customers to make a difference by simply changing their water supplier, just as Northgate Vehicle Hire has done."

John Barrie continued, "With the money Northgate has donated through using Aquaid, every penny goes towards the charities. What's more, any workers used in the building projects are local so the money gets reinvested within the community. Northgate and all of Aquaid customers can be 100% sure that all the money is making a difference to people and villages less fortunate."

2013-09-13 - Northgate Vehicle Hire help to keep the Huddersfield Town FC on the road

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and fleet management, recently announced a new partnership with Huddersfield Town FC.

The sponsorship will see Northgate supply Huddersfield Town FC with a 17-seat minibus that will be used to transport Academy players and staff to and from games during the 2013/2014 seasons.

Huddersfield Town FC manager, Mark Jacobs, commented: "We're delighted that Northgate Vehicle Hire has become an official partner of Huddersfield Town for the 2013/14 season. Its provision of the minibus is a major boost for the Academy at a time when it is growing very quickly, both in terms of the quality of players and the number of high-quality coaching staff from Under-8 to Under-18 level."

Mark continued: "We're also looking forward to expanding our working relationship with Northgate over the next 12 months and beyond. We are always proud to align the Club with industry leaders and Northgate doesn't only tick that box, but it is also proud of its Huddersfield roots."

Paul Rodney, Sales Manager for the Huddersfield branch of Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Here at Northgate we work hard to ensure we are supporting the local community. We have a strong association with the Huddersfield area, so teaming up with the Huddersfield Town Football Club made perfect sense. We are confident that the partnership will be very successful and demonstrate our commitment to supporting local businesses and organisations within the area."

2013-09-06 - Northgate Vehicle Hire's Southampton branch supports Macmillan charity triathlon

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has supported Macmillan Cancer Support's Pedal Paddle Pace fun charity triathlon with the provision of two Luton Transits, which transported the charity's fleet of kayaks from the New Forest to Winchester.

The event has been running for ten years and is currently organised by a group of friends, which began managing the event on behalf of Macmillan Cancer Support five years ago and have raised a massive £65,000 to date. The money saved as a result of Northgate's participation in the charity triathlon has been donated straight back to the Macmillan charity.

Darren Palmer, Area Sales Manager at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Northgate's Southampton branch was thrilled to be able to support the Macmillan charity triathlon through the provision of the two vehicles free of charge. We knew transporting 35 kayaks would be a job within its self, so were delighted to hear that the event was such a success."

Mike Sharpe, a Data Processing Director at Marketing Sciences Ltd. and dedicated Macmillan Cancer Support fundraiser, commented: "Over recent years, the Pedal Paddle Pace has become a real cornerstone of Winchester life and this year was no exception with 420 competitors taking part on the day. A total of over £20,000 was raised for Macmillan and the team is very grateful to Northgate Vehicle hire for its kindness in donating the vehicles for the charity event, as it will contribute towards the money which we are able to donate to Macmillan."

2013-08-30 - Thriving £2.5billion local economy sees Northgate launch in Slough

Slough's £2.5billion economy and thriving business community has attracted yet another large national business to the area. Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has launched a new branch on Slough Trading Estate, the largest privately owned trading estate in Europe.

The new branch, situated on Bath Road, spans across 0.5 acres and will offer capacity for up to 70 vehicles at any one time. The launch is expected to bring six new jobs to the area and forms part of Northgate's 2013 plans to expand and provide efficient and effective fleet solutions that meet the needs of local businesses throughout the UK.

Marcus Strong, Northgate Vehicle Hire's Area Operations Manager, commented: "Slough is listed as one of the top three most productive towns in the UK outside of London and is home to some of the best known names in business, including Amazon, Honda, Research in Motion, O2 and Mars. Offering us a unique opportunity to broaden our client base and allowing us to offer our bespoke flexible vehicle hire packages to local businesses. Add to this, the new branch's prime location, and we are confident that the new site will achieve strong results."

Faraz Khanche, New Business Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire's Slough branch, commented: "We look forward to servicing the needs of the local businesses and establishing ourselves as an integral resource for companies of all sizes, from independent start-ups and SMEs to blue-chips and PLCs. We welcome anyone that is considering their vehicle acquisition options and looking to reduce fleet costs to pop in and discuss opportunities with us."

The Slough branch features contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers, with designated hire desk staff and access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles from leading manufacturers like Ford, Mercedes Benz Volkswagen and Peugeot. In addition to the opening deals on offer to local businesses, such as commercial vehicle hire packages starting from £55 per week, the recent introduction of Northgate's personal hire offering allows the general public to benefit from extremely competitive daily hire rates on both cars and vans.

2013-08-30 - New Northgate partnership with The AA set to get UK businesses back on the road

A partnership deal has been signed between Northgate Vehicle Hire and the UK's biggest breakdown provider, The Automobile Association (The AA), The partnership comes as a result of the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and fleet management continuing its investment in customer service. This partnership will support its main aim of keeping its customers on the road longer and reducing costly vehicle down time.

The partnership hosts a wealth of benefits for Northgate customers, who can now take advantage of the 45 minute roadside attendance times, in addition to miss-fuel, key and battery assist services. The partnership is designed to ensure businesses utilising Northgate's services can deliver the highest levels of service to their customers by minimising the down time associated with vehicle breakdowns or servicing requirements.

Bill Parsons, Head of Purchasing for Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Our partnership with The AA will benefit our customers with immediate effect. Our affiliation with the UKs leading breakdown provider will have a major impact on the service our customers receive, as we are now able to attend to all Northgate vehicles, including heavy duty vehicles, requiring road side assistance in addition to having the facility to drop customers off directly at our branches for a replacement vehicle."

Bill continued: "Northgate is working hard to ensure the service it offers its customers is second to none; providing roadside assistance, and other AA services as standard, reinforces this commitment. We have every confidence in the partnership and look forward to seeing our customers benefit from it moving forward."

In addition to the roadside assistance, drop off and key, fuel and battery assist services, the AA partnership will also reduce Northgate's previous call out costs.

Northgate's customers will also benefit from vehicle warranty assistance and increased support patrol servicing across a wider geographic area, in addition to higher first time fix ratings and a quick-phone service, which allows businesses to dial for assistance faster.

Roger Williams, Director of Fleet Services for The AA commented: "We are delighted to have this opportunity to work with Northgate Vehicle Hire and look forward to providing an excellent service for their customers for many years to come. These are exciting times for the UK's market leaders in both the Breakdown and Vehicle Hire sectors, and the new relationship recognises the strength of our individual public profiles and the similarities between our respective brand values. The AA prides itself on its partnership approach with key customers and we will be working continuously to develop bespoke initiatives, which will improve efficiency, effectiveness and overall quality of service for Northgate's end users."

The partnership is also being rolled out across Northgate's sister company Van Monster, a leading commercial vehicle retailer, which will see the company provide a free 3 month AA Warranty and Roadside Assistance package, as part of a Customer Charter for all Van Monster customers.

The Charter includes a 48-hour return policy, in case customers are not completely satisfied with their purchase, reiterating Van Monster's commitment to providing the highest quality of vehicles to local businesses.

The recent partnership also involves an AA Audited Inspection, whereby all of Van Monster's vehicles are inspected prior to sale to ensure the highest standard. The inspection, which is audited and approved by the AA, includes checking the operation and condition of a minimum of 24 vehicle elements including mechanical parts, fluids and bodywork condition. The AA provides a number of unannounced inspections every month to ensure Van Monster's inspection standard is consistent. The inspection is not offered by any other used van dealer, seeing Van Monster continue to dominate the local markets in which it operates.

2013-08-12 - Northgate Vehicle Hire appoints Area Operations Manager for North East

To support its growth and development across the North East, Northgate Vehicle Hire, market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, which has branches in North Shields, Blaydon, Stockton-on-Tees, Wilton and Darlington, has appointed Robert Knowles as Area Operations Manager.

Previously Area Manager for the North East for tool and equipment hire company, Brandon Hire Limited, Robert managed the development of a network of branches to maximise profitability, whilst also sustaining the highest level of customer service.

As part of his new role, the North East will benefit from Robert's active support and continued delivery of sustained and profitable growth in relation to vehicles on hire. In addition Robert will be working to increase access on ready to rent vehicles across the regions, as well as improved utilisation and building on customer satisfaction across the branch network.

Commenting on his new role, Robert said: "Having joined Northgate from the hire industry, I have a strong understanding of the current market and the wider hire offering available across the regions. I believe this, alongside my enthusiasm and drive, will help to strengthen the current position of both regions and deliver a heightened service for our customers."

He continued: "Northgate has a unique offering; the principle of hire is relatively simple but we are able to draw on the resource we have due to our national scale, and filter this down to the regions to provide quality service at a local level. It is this offering that I plan to strengthen across the North East. With the support of the fantastic area teams and the strategy that's in place, I am more than confident that this will be achieved moving forward.”

2013-08-10 - Northgate's Norwich branch supports The Mathew Project at this year's Sundown Festival

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and fleet management, has supported The Mathew Project at this year's Sundown Festival, with the provision of a free vehicle to the charity.

The festival, which took place between 30th August and 1st September, saw over 45,000 people head to Norfolk to watch their favourite musical acts. The Mathew Project, which works to support individuals with drug and alcohol related issues, was present at the festival to provide valuable support to the festivalgoers.

Neil Ireson, Norwich Branch Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Northgate's Norwich branch was thrilled to support The Mathew Project with the provision of a free of charge vehicle at the Sundown Festival. The work that this charity does to provide care and education to the public is truly outstanding, and we are happy to support such a worthy cause. I know that the team had a very successful time at the festival and we wish them all the best for the future."

Sharon Hulbert, Media & Fundraising Manager at The Mathew Project, commented: "We are delighted that Northgate kindly agreed to help our charity by providing us with the use of a van over the festival weekend. The free of charge van enabled us to transport equipment and publicity materials to the event - something we cannot fund ourselves. Neil and the Norwich branch team have been extremely helpful throughout the whole process, which we are very grateful for!"

Sharon continued, "With thousands of people attending the festival, it was imperative that The Mathew Project was able to provide a support service to those who have concerns around substance misuse and also to promote our service and raise funds."

2013-08-01 - Why the fleet benefits of flexible hire offer food for thought

In response to '2013 CVO Barometer puts emphasis on fleet benefits of contract hire', Fleet World, 31st July 2013.

While the benefits of contract hire may be appealing for some, the more bespoke and flexible benefits not so surprisingly associated with flexible hire, must also be considered by fleet managers nationwide, urges Northgate Vehicle Hire's Head of Marketing, Jonathan Pearce.

The main differential between contract and flexible hire is the ability to add to or remove vehicles from your fleet at any time, to adapt to demand, without incurring any kind of penalty; a necessity for fleet managers whose businesses are seasonal - specifically the retail, post and logistics, and construction sectors. When a vehicle is not utilized under contract, it still costs that business money whereas with flexible hire it can be immediately returned and associated costs removed from the balance sheet.

Flexible hire brings with it a range of benefits, not least the opportunity to dispel maintenance costs and down time periods of a wholly owned or contracted fleet. With flexible vehicle hire, businesses can access services such as maintenance management, which completely takes the onus of their drivers. We offer proactive scheduled maintenance and servicing, as opposed to contract hire, where drivers often have to organise and schedule their own maintenance.

This hassle free service is becoming more and more appealing for busy businesses, and is accompanied by a host of cost and utilisation benefits. There is zero depreciation of the vehicles on hire and therefore no need to worry about residual value. Reliability risks associated with ageing fleets are also removed and the support of the supplier is guaranteed should emergency back up or replacement vehicles be required.

With more and more companies constantly trying to cut costs, an all-inclusive fixed fee that covers servicing, maintenance and replacement vehicles, as well as the actual rental, is perfect, freeing time and capital to forward plan and focus on more pressing matters.

Flexible vehicle hire is where the clear benefits lie for smart fleet managers who can't gaze into their crystal ball and forecast their fleet with absolute certainty. Further benefits include:

• The ability to control fleet costs and forget about forecasting fleets
• Flexible hire periods, fleet sizes and vehicle sizes
• Access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles, which may have been previously unaffordable
• Freeing up budget that would otherwise be spent on purchasing vehicles
• For vehicles required on a longer term basis, customisation including tow bars, roof racks, beacons and livery - all tailored to individual requirements

2013-07-29 - Northgate Vehicle Hire's Ipswich depot helps young people to achieve with Lofty Heights

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has sponsored Ipswich-based Lofty Heights, an organisation that helps change the lives of youngsters by providing them with employment opportunity.

Lofty Heights is a trustworthy and friendly loft emptying service for elderly and disabled people and thanks to Northgate Vehicle Hire, the team of five young people now has a smart uniform to wear. Lofty Heights regularly use Northgate's Double Cap Vehicle to get the young team and their kits to many jobs around Suffolk and beyond.

Deanna Britten, Rental Supervisor at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "When we were approached by Lofty Heights to be a sponsor we were more than happy to support such a good cause by providing new uniforms for the Lofty Heights team. We are always happy to support local good causes and initiatives and hope to continue working with this social enterprise in the future."

Olive Quinton, Lofty Heights' Founding CEO, commented: "We use Northgate Vehicle Hire on a regular basis for our jobs due to the flexibility of the company's hire packages and the quality service we always receive. The uniforms Northgate has provided give us a strong brand identity so that we can promote Lofty Heights and continue to improve the lives of more youngsters as we grow as a business."

2013-07-12 - Northgate Vehicle Hire continues its environmentally beneficial tyre-recycling scheme

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has partnered with Vellco Ltd., the UK's number one in professional used tyre management, to continue Northgate's commitment to corporate social responsibility.

In 2012 Vellco Ltd. collected a total of 85,786 tyres from Northgate depots based in the UK. With 65,000 car units representing 540 tonnes, 20,000 van tyres representing 250 tonnes, and finally 786 light truck units representing 20 tonnes. This figure is set to rise throughout 2013.

Colin Gilstin, Head of Health, Safety & Environment at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Since working with Vellco Ltd. we have recycled a vast amount of tyres. As a leader in our industry we feel it's extremely important for us to show that we are environmentally responsible and our partnership demonstrates our commitment to protecting the environment that we hope is recognised by our loyal customers."

Once Vellco Ltd. has collected all car and van tryes they are supplied to the UK Cement Industry (Lafarge Industries) via its wholly owned subsidiary company, Sapphire Energy, where the tyres are shredded into 50mm pieces and then fed into the cement kiln as a replacement fuel for coal. Not only is this environmentally beneficial, but it also reduces NOX oxides of nitrogen, as well as an efficient calorific burn value compared with coal. ?Light Truck tyres, on the other hand, do not go into the cement process - they are recycled through a granulating into their constituent components, such as rubber and steel.

The reclaimed steel goes straight back into the steel industry for recycling and the rubber "chips" are used as secondary raw material in the production of artificial sports surfaces, children's playgrounds, rubber mats, and various other rubber products.

2013-06-25 - Northgate reveals extensive London growth plans in FY14

Revealing extensive growth plans in the London area over the next 12 months, Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, is still on track to significantly increase its UK network within the next four years. The company's expansion within the London area has already commenced, with the opening of two new sites in the final quarter of FY13 and the launch of six to eight new depots is planned over the next 12 months.

The new openings in Luton and Brent Cross coupled with those planned to launch over the next 12 months form the initial stages of a wider UK based branch expansion plan which will add up to 20 new depots to the company's existing network over the next four years.

New sites will take three years to reach maturity and, at this point, will operate a fleet of approximately 500 vehicles per site. Financially, new sites are estimated to break even in their first year with overall return on capital employed exceeding current levels.

With recent research from the BVRLA revealing that the rental sector contributes £14bn per year to the UK economy and supports over 183,000 jobs, Northgate is committed to seeing these statistics increase as it hails the next financial year as one of excitement and change for the £500m turnover business.

After recording growth in the number of regional customers across the country in FY13, Northgate is hoping its new London sites experience the success of its Irish operation which is currently performing at a growth rate of 20% per annum.

Bob Contreras, CEO of Northgate Vehicle Hire, comments: "Over the last six months we've launched new depots in Luton, Brent Cross and Huddersfield, and all to great effect. Our focus will now shift to the London market due to the demand for flexible hire in the capital. Each new site will have an initial set up cost of c.£0.2m, covering property, personnel and marketing costs. If the new sites perform in line with our expectations, they should break even in year one and by year three have a ROCE in excess of 16%."

2013-06-07 - Northgate Vehicle Hire helps Virgin Media team raise funds for local charity

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has recently supported Virgin Media in a charity cycle ride. The bike ride, which lasted for three days, raised much-needed funds for the Abbies Love charity, which supports and raises the awareness of SUDEP, sudden unexpected death in epilepsy. Northgate's Stockton depot backed the charity by donating a support vehicle to assist on the 155-mile bike ride as well as a 10 seater people carrier to take the cyclists and equipment across to the starting point.

The bike ride, which took place from the 28th June until the 30th June, saw Virgin Media Customer Relations Agents, Craig Miller, Andrew Wright, Simon Pritchard, Jonathon Paul, James Raper and Christopher Swinbank, make up the cycle team that made the impressive journey from Whitehaven to Hartlepool. So far, the three day charity cycle challenge has raised a massive £1,200 for Abbies Love.

John Deacon, Area Sales Manager at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Abbies Love is doing a fantastic job of supporting and raising the awareness of SUDEP. It is a cause, which has really touched the hearts of both the Virgin Media team and Northgate. We are delighted to support such a worthy cause in raising money and awareness through donating the support vehicle for the ride."

Craig Miller, Customer Relations Agent at Virgin Media, commented: "The charity cycle ride has been a huge success and I would like to thank everybody who supported the cause and got involved on the day. Abbies Love is an important cause and it has been a real pleasure to be involved in such a rewarding event."

2013-05-31 - A Sweet appointment! Northgate announces new Area Operations Manager for the South West and Wales

Northgate Vehicle Hire, market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, which has depots in Cardiff, Swansea, Milton Keynes and Cannock, has appointed Darren Sweet as Area Operations Manager for the South West and Wales as part of its continued investment in people and processes.

Having worked in the motor industry for 26 years and at Northgate for over a decade, Darren has spent the last six months as Northgate's Regional Manager in Ireland where he was responsible for all operational management throughout Southern Ireland. In his new role as Area Operations Manager, he will be responsible for all Northgate Branch Operations in Wales and the South West and ensuring they all run smoothly and efficiently.

Darren commented on his new role: "I have been fortunate enough to work at Northgate for over 10 years in a number of senior positions both here in the UK and in Southern Ireland. This new position back in the South West and Wales provides me with a hugely exciting challenge. Following the many positive changes in the business, I'm looking forward to helping Northgate build on its current market leading position."

2013-05-23 - Northgate shows its support to Murphy Surveys' charity cycle

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has recently supported Murphy Surveys in a charity cycle ride, which raised funds for The Children's Medical & Research Foundation, the charity of Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin. The Dublin based depot supported the local global consultancy company with the provision of a Transit van to use as transport during the 40km bike ride.

The charity cycle ride, which took place on Saturday 18th May, saw Murphy Surveys’ Directors Raymond Murphy, Niall Murphy and Colin Murphy, Marketing Executive, Katie Gabbett, Operations Manager, Noel Poynton, and the Chairperson of Kilcullen Cycling Club, Liam Walker, head up a team of cyclists who made their way from the Irish head office in Kilcullen, County Kildare, to Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin via Ballymore, Blessington and Tallaght.

So far, the charity cycle has raised in excess of €12,000, which will contribute to the completion of the hospital's cardiac and cancer wards.

Owen McNamara, Area Sales Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire in Ireland, commented: "We were thrilled to be able to provide support to such a fantastic cause. The care provided by Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin has touched the lives of both the Murphy family and members of our staff here at Northgate, so we were more than happy to lend our support to the team. As a local company ourselves, we think it's important to provide support to other businesses in the area and we hope to help many more in the future."

2013-05-20 - Northgate appoints four National New Business Development Managers to drive growth

As part of its 2013 business growth strategy, Northgate, market leader in complete fleet management solutions, has appointed Mike Strong, Steve Fay, Michelle Hughes and Neil Skellam as National New Business Development Managers to its rapidly expanding UK and Ireland operation.

The four new recruits join Northgate as the Plc undertakes a major repositioning of its offering. Already renowned throughout the UK and Ireland for its flexible vehicle hire services, the National New Business Development Managers will be tasked with communicating Northgate's complete fleet management solution offering to customers, both old and new, across the UK.

Ready for the challenge is Mike Strong who, having previously worked as an interim Sales Consultant and as Business Development Manager for recognised recruitment companies, Impellam Group Plc and Carlisle Staffing Ltd., brings a wealth of experience in strategic business development to the role.

Joining Mike and the team is Steve Fay, whose 15 years' experience in business development with leading companies, such as Wella and Kent Pharmaceuticals, puts him in a good position help support and drive Northgate's 2013 business strategy.

Previously working as National Business Development Manager for corporate clothing company, Kwintet, Michelle Hughes also joins Northgate. Michelle has considerable knowledge in fine-tuning corporate strategic development, following her work on large-scale contracts and solution propositions for blue chip companies in the health care industry.

Applying experience gained over the past eight years working as a Sales Professional for software solutions provider, Fujitsu, Neil Skellam completes the new team of four. Neil's background in business development for IT solutions will further help Northgate drive awareness of its Complete Fleet Management Solution across a number of UK markets.

Northgate's Head of National Sales, Colin Wilson, comments: "This is a key period of growth for Northgate and so it is essential that we are fully resourced to not only drive that growth, but also ensure our positioning is in line with our customers' needs. To reflect this we have looked to broaden our horizons from a recruitment perspective and, as a result, we have taken the strategic decision to appoint professionals with diverse business development expertise across a range of industries."

"Our National New Business Development Managers will be essential in our continued growth throughout 2013. We are confident that their combined industry experience will work to achieve this as Northgate embarks on a new era as an industry leader in complete fleet management solutions."

2013-05-17 - New market research suggests freight & logistics sector will increase demand for LCVs by 8%

Following research carried out by Northgate Vehicle Hire into the freight, logistics, post and railway transportation sectors, the market leader in complete fleet management solutions has discovered the sectors are set to increase demand for light commercial vehicles (LCVs) by 8% within the next three years.

The rise in demand for LCVs, which was attributed to a predicted rise in the sector's forecast of output (GVA) annual growth rate (see figure 1), is expected to lead to over 140,000 LCVs in use by businesses operating within the freight, logistics, post and railway transportation sectors by 2016 (see figure 2). The research also revealed a rising demand for fuel efficiency amongst fleets, with the Director of The Transport Association stating that "currently 35% outsource [their fleets], but this will increase driven by fuel efficiency needs."

When questioned by Northgate as part of the market research undertaken, influential individuals within the industry also anticipated a rise in the demand for LCVs, with the Director of the Road Haulage Association (RHA) suggesting that the 60% of companies already utilising LCVs will rise within the next five years.

Jonathan Pearce, Head of Marketing, at Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "When growth is predicted in an uncertain economic climate it is often difficult for businesses to fully prepare without parting with large chunks of capital. It's important for business owners to look at smart solutions to managing outlay of capital. As a company's fleet is often one of its more costly expenses, it is essential that businesses within the freight, logistics, post and railway transportation sectors seriously consider how their fleets are managed. Opting to lease vehicles as part of a flexible fleet management package is a solution that will see win-win results across the board."

He continued: "We have already experienced a rise in demand for flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet solutions within the industry and feel assured that this will continue as the sector continues to grow over the next three to five years."

More and more businesses within these sectors are opting to outsource the management of their fleets to ensure they meet the demands of a growing industry with a hassle free solution. As a result the popularity of flexible hire has been soaring, due to its ability to support businesses with seasonal fluctuations. Having the ability to add to or remove vehicles from their fleet at any time without penalty could be the make or break factor for many businesses within the freight, logistics, post and railway transportation sectors.

The needs of businesses within these sectors change with the seasons – and the extent of this can't always be anticipated – but, for financial reasons, a fleet (which could be anything from one vehicle to one thousand) needs to be utilised 100% of the time. If it isn't, then it is a significant financial cost to the business. This is often why hiring a proportion of their fleet rather than purchasing or contract hiring all of their fleet makes more business sense. There is no depreciation, no need to worry about residual value, risks are removed, and the support of the supplier is guaranteed should emergency back up or replacement vehicles be required. Vehicle hire completely removes any of the constraints associated with contract hire.

The benefits of flexible vehicle hire are currently growing at a similar rate to the spiralling external costs that are currently seen in the market, for example fuel, tyres, oil and lubricants. The Director of the RHA further commented: "Rising fuel costs, tight credit conditions and European competitors are all driving further consolidation. This means vehicle hire and outsourcing will increase as larger firms benefit from economies of scale."

2013-05-09 - Northgate Stockport announces constructive partnership with Leven Energy Services

Northgate Vehicle Hire, the market leader in flexible vehicle hire and complete fleet management solutions, has partnered with one of the UK's leading utilities providers, Leven Energy Services, to deliver a flexible fleet solution for their business in the North West.

The partnership includes flexible rental of up to 18 vehicles at any one time, allowing Leven to pick and choose its fleet requirements according to demand. Leven's service level agreement with Northgate is also completely flexible, enabling the Manchester based utilities provider to have full control over the hire periods across different types of vehicles with varying features such as roof racks, tow bars and customised livery.

The flexible partnership also sees Northgate deliver around the clock customer support, a pick up and drop off service across the UK and the ability for Leven to reduce or increase its fleet at any time, without incurring extra charges or hidden costs.

Paul Kelsall, Plant Manager for Leven Energy Services, commented: "Working with Northgate has helped us to apply flexibility to our fleet, something that is of high importance to us as a company with varying fleet needs throughout the year. As our work is within the construction industry, working for large companies such as Balfour Beatty, The National Grid and Electricity North West, variables such as the weather and seasonality can effect our fleet demand without warning; our partnership with Northgate allows us to react to these changes without having to spend excess capital."

He continued: "Our partnership isn't just based on Northgate’s competitive rates, the service delivered by the team is exemplary leaving us assured that whatever our fleet requirements, Northgate is on hand to meet our needs."

Rachel Sherran, North West Account Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "We are delighted to announce our partnership with Leven. We have worked hard to ensure that our fleet management solutions package helps alleviate time and money Leven has to invest in its fleet, whilst also providing flexibility. We are confident that our flexible partnership will go from strength to strength in 2013 and moving forwards."

2013-04-30 - Successful start to 2013 sees Northgate return to Huddersfield

Following the successful delivery of its 2013 business growth strategy within the first quarter of this year, Northgate Vehicle Hire has returned to Huddersfield to launch a new depot on Red Doles Lane. Formerly a Northgate Vehicle Sales outlet, the site's redevelopment will see Northgate introduce its flexible vehicle hire solutions to Huddersfield in a bid to meet the demand for a national commercial fleet provider within the area.

Situated in the heart of Huddersfield's Leeds Road Business Trade Park on the prominent Red Doles Lane, the new depot is expected to bring 10 new jobs to the area. The depot launch forms part of Northgate's 2013 plans to expand and provide efficient and effective fleet solutions that meet the needs of local businesses throughout the UK.

The new depot features a range of services to help the growing fleet size in the area and will house up to 45 vehicles at any one time. Following a successful launch year, Northgate intends to invest in workshop facilities, creating a further 8 full time jobs from the third year of operation onwards.

Andrea Cowburn , Area Operations Manager for Northgate Vehicle Hire, commented: "Huddersfield has a strong business heritage which remains buoyant to this day, and with that comes the need for a national flexible vehicle hire provider with the resource to fully service the varying demands of local businesses. Through the launch of our Huddersfield depot, we intend to meet those needs."

She continued: "The area has a strong manufacturing heritage and, as a result, a significant number of businesses in the area fall into this industry sector. Construction, wholesale and retail trade are also prominent industries for Huddersfield - industry sectors that Northgate has a wealth of experience in dealing with, making our competitive packages all the more appealing and relevant for local business owners. We are confident that this, paired with our impressive new facilities, will aid in our continued success this year."

The Huddersfield depot will also feature contemporary and comfortable waiting areas for customers, with designated hire desk staff and access to the latest fuel-efficient vehicles. In addition to the opening deals on offer to local businesses, such as commercial vehicle hire packages starting from £55 per week, the recent introduction of Northgate's retail hire offering allows the general public to benefit from extremely competitive daily hire rates on both cars and vans.

2013-04-23 - Northgate engineers flexible fleet solution package for Aughton Automotion

Northgate Vehicle Hire, market leader in flexible fleet solutions, has partnered with Aughton Automotion Ltd., an engineering services provider that works with clients such as The National Grid, to assist in reducing its capital outlay on its 40 plus fleet of commercial vehicles.

The new partnership sees Northgate provide Aughton Automotion with a flexible fleet solution, which includes up to 40 rental vehicles in addition to fleet services such as maintenance and repair, a direct driver line and breakdown and recovery. The driving factor behind the partnership was Northgate's ability to quickly respond to Aughton Automotion's continually changing demands, without the company incurring extra cost or charges for adding vehicles to its fleet or taking them off-hire during quieter periods.

Additional benefits of the partnership include Aughton's ability to access the latest fuel-efficient vehicles, reducing its carbon emissions, and take advantage of Northgate's regular fleet replenishment, enabling the company to operate a lighter and greener fleet.

Jane Forshaw, a North West Account Manager for Northgate, commented: "Our partnership with Aughton Automotion is unique as the company's requirements involve vehicle features such as fitted shelving, hand wash units and fire extinguishers. As working vehicles it is paramount that these features are fitted to the highest standards to ensure a safe and clean working environment, as a result we outsource the installation of the additional specifications on our vehicle to national companies VanLiners and The Signbox, which ensures a consistent level of quality at all times. This is just one of many features we deliver to Aughton as part of our partnership. In short, our aim is to deliver a cost effective flexible fleet package that meets the needs and requirements of the business, be that fitting bespoke vehicle features or providing additional vehicles within a short period of time."

Chris Clayton, Operations Director at Aughton Automotion, commented: "The service Northgate has provided has been ideal for our business needs. Vehicles are delivered promptly and to our requirements, and the service is nothing but professional, cost effective and efficient. Our business has ever-changing requirements, which results in varying fleet needs, something Northgate has delivered to date without hesitation."

Chris continued, "Northgate has also helped us to achieve additional cost effective benefits via regular vehicle replacement, which has resulted in better fuel economy, with modern, lighter vehicles. This is key to our operation as our principle clients in the gas utilities sector place particular emphasis on reducing CO2 emissions. Our most recent batch of vehicles provided by Northgate should enable Aughton to exceed its 2013 CO2 reduction targets yet again."

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