The 100-year-old company EP Barrus, which has become famous for several of its marine brands, including Mariner, Mercury, Yanmar, John Deere and Quicksilver, will be relocating to a new 16-acre site, which forms part of a commercial space on the edge of the Graven Hill Development to the south of Bicester. Karen Curtin, Managing Director of the company that oversees the ex-MOD site, said: “We are delighted to welcome Barrus as the lead occupier for Graven Hill. Attracting a business with an enviable reputation for quality products is a coup and endorses our belief that Graven Hill is an ideal location for businesses due to its excellent central location and ease of access to both the national road and rail networks.”
Having relocated from London to Bicester in 1977, EP Barrus is a major employer in Bicester and it is aiming to maintain its established commitment to the recruitment of local people. It has already developed long-term relationships with Oxfordshire schools, colleges and universities, offering work experience placements and apprenticeships to young engineering students – and many of these students have taken up careers in engineering, becoming long-standing Barrus employees.
Robert Muir, Managing Director of EP Barrus, said: “We are delighted to announce our exciting relocation plans in this, our centennial year. Our growth plans have been constrained by the size of our premises in Launton Road and it has always been our intention to expand within the Oxfordshire area. We are looking forward to the beginning of a new and exciting chapter for Barrus, and integrating into the new village community within the innovative Graven Hill Development. In addition to securing the future of our loyal workforce, I am confident that we will be creating more job opportunities over the next few years in support of our long-term, strategic business growth. As our centennial strapline states, ‘We are celebrating our first 100-years, gearing up for the next’.”
It is anticipated that Barrus will occupy the new site in 2019 when the Phase 2 land transfer from MoD to Graven Hill is due to be completed. In the mean time, EP Barrus is working with the Graven Hill Village Development Company to see if it is possible to secure earlier occupancy.