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Engineering firm celebrates 45 years in Plymouth with commemorative history book

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: September 04, 2014

By Olivier Vergnault, WMN Business Editor, Twitter: @OliVergnault

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A metalwork engineering firm is celebrating 45 years in business by publishing a book telling the story of its founding and growth in Plymouth.

“Aldermans: a Plymouth story”, has been authored by well-known Plymouth historian and biographer Chris Robinson.

It tells how a young Bill Alderman came to live in Plymouth with his parents in the 1960s.

Having served an apprenticeship as a precision toolmaker at the huge Tecalemit factory, Bill forged a life and business for himself in the city, founding Alderman Tooling in 1969.

Aldermans originally supplied precision machine tooling for the city’s growing manufacturing sector.

Forty-five years later the company is one of the South West’s leading precision metalwork engineers.

It combines traditional machinery with the latest CNC technology to provide an integrated metalwork design and manufacturing service.

Aldermans is a family-run business – Bill’s younger daughter Karen Friendship took the reigns as managing director in 2008.

Karen said: “The book was originally intended as a surprise for Bill’s 70th birthday, and as a private record for our family.

“However, we soon realised we couldn’t write the story properly without involving Bill.

“Doing so helped enrich the story, and before we knew it our family record had become a 48 page book.”

The family also took the decision to share their story more widely."

Karen said: "We recognise that our business would not be here today without the many customers, suppliers and people of Plymouth who have contributed along the way – it’s their story as much as ours.”

The book is available to download free of charge as a PDF file from the Aldermans website – www.aldermantooling.co.uk

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