Firm behind East Lancashire's most famous signs looks forward to digital future (From Lancashire Telegraph)
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Firm behind East Lancashire's most famous signs looks forward to digital future
THE firm behind some of East Lancashire’s most iconic signs is moving forward into the digital age.
And for Parkinson Signs, it isn’t a sign of the times as the company’s annual turnover is £1million.
Working alongside Thwaites for over 40 years, one of the firm’s major projects includes the 10-foot neon letters on the side of the brewery in Penny Street, Blackburn.
Rovers’ legend Jack Walker once delivered steel to the company that was then Parkinson & Worden by horse and hand cart.
Walker Steel, Whitbreads (formerly Thomas Duttons) and Matthew Brown (formerly Nuttalls) were just a few of the famous Blackburn businesses that were on the books.
Run by three generations of the Parkinson family since 1946, the business was first founded by Arnold Parkinson.
Current managing director, Ian Parkinson, 44, joined the family business when he was 18, working alongside his father Gordon before his death three years ago.
Ian helped move the company into the digital age incorporating computer aided design and digital output.
He said: “We work closely with some of the major firms in East Lancashire but we also do high street retail sinage and small business too, although 70 per cent of our business specialises in the brewing industry. We work closely with designers and architects and we work together from the word go.
“Obviously things move on and we still get orders for the traditional stuff but we also do a lot of digital.”
Continued investment in the latest sign making technology and production techniques ensures that the company can deliver brand identity. The company also work with Blackburn with Darwen council and other local authorities.
Some of the signs include St Mary’s College and Rhyddings High School.
The new Fielding Street car park signs were also produced by Parkinson.
The Blackburn-born boss said that the council should work closely with businesses to boost trade in the area.
He said: “I would like the council to use us more because it is good for them to use local contractors, keeping business in the area.”
Mr Parkinson said the company was proud of its heritage while encompassing the very best of modern technology and methods to meet the digital demand of today’s world.
He said: ”We have had to change with the times during the depression we have held our own and expanded to cover the wider aspect of sinage."
Exterior, interior and 3D signs are just a few specialisms of the company, they can make sinage with widths up to 2m wide and lengths up to 20m long. The firm employs 22 staff at the firm’s Chapel Street base and Mr Parkinson he was proud to have kept workers in a job during the recession.
He said: “The people who work here have been here for a long time.
“I think that it is pretty good that we have managed to keep staff employed when times are hard."