Going Beyond Making Everything Possible
Moving from humble beginnings to a world-class supply chain partner, MEP’s evolution has been both exciting and impressive
The company’s story starts 45 years ago in 1972 when founder Terry Hart realised his entrepreneurial ambitions, took the plunge and set up in business on his own. Having spent his early career working in various industries such as construction, engineering and injection moulding, Terry was well placed to enter the world of aerospace, and indeed the business’ first product was a silicon glass moulded slot liner for Lucas Aerospace – with similar products still in production today.
Terry called his new venture Moulded and Engineered Plastics and it was born in a single garage in Forest Row, East Sussex, from whereit quickly began to expand. Just four years afterits beginning, Moulded and Engineered Plastics moved into a unit above a machining company called Newland Engineering in Tovill, Kent. It was at this point it became a limited company, at the request of Lucas Aerospace, and M.E.P (Aeroplastics) Ltd. was born. The new building enabled it to introduce the machining of inserts and plastic components to its capabilities, and the growth continued. Another move across the yard occurred in 1978 and after a decade in that space, MEP moved again – this time to the other side of Maidstone and into a modern facility in Aylesford.
Through the 1990s the business achieved the BS5750 accreditation that became ISO 9001, and just over three decades after it was founded Phil Hart became Managing Director. Phil’s wealth of engineering and management knowledge, coupled with his pursuit for excellence created an award winning approach to supporting MEP’s clients, inspiring confidence and trust by delivering highgrade engineering solutions through collaboration and consultation. Under his leadership the company transitioned into the MEP of today. Terry Hart retired in 2007, but is still on hand for advice and to share his invaluable knowledge from 35 years in industry.
Thanks to the solid foundations that Terry had created for Phil to build upon, the accolades and achievements continued for the company – it became accredited to ISO 9100 (then Rev C) in 2009, as well as receiving its first 21st Century Supply Chain award, a bronze. MEP has subsequently received a further five, the last four being at Silver level. In 2010 it received accreditation to ISO 14001 too.
Such has been the success of the organisation that in 2012 it took on a second site in Aylesford to give it nearly 21,000 sq. ft overall and the Machining and Moulding Value Streams were formed. Today MEP describes itself as a ‘multi award winning manufacturing business that specialises in moulding and machining’.
Having worked with the Aerospace and Defence sector for four decades, MEP understands what is important and how it can best address the challenges and requirements of its demanding and highly regarded customer base. It prides itself on delivering manufacturing excellence in both plastics and metal, offering customers a comprehensive range of manufacturing practices, ensuring high quality results at competitive prices. Thanks to a healthy investment philosophy and a forward eye on the horizon to predict what customers need, its on-site facilities now provide a complete manufacturing environment, from research and development to delivered components; while its highly-skilled, experienced workforce use best practices to deliver parts ontime and to specification – a vital requirement in this sophisticated sector.
However, MEP isn’t restricted to working with Aerospace and Defence – the company’s facilities and expertise also serve Motor Sport, Space and Rail. What unites these is the need for high quality, superb precision and the ability to offer solutions to a wide range of different issues. This is where MEP’s Insulation and Moulding experience and capabilities come to the fore. In Insulations, its scope of manufacture is wide ranging, from stamped out engineering laminates and films, to moulded and machined complex insulations – it has a solution to fit clients’ needs.
Insulators and Insulations
- Machined tight tolerances
- Stamping to tight tolerances
In Moulding, whether thermoset or thermoplastic, with four different moulding techniques carried out on-site, including the encapsulation of metallic inserts (manufactured in-house), and all post-moulding and finishing processes, MEP is the ‘one-stop-shop’ covering the plastic needs of all its clients.
- Thermoset compression
- Injection moulding of thermoplastics
- Thermoset transfer
- Hand lay-up
Of course these services are offered alongside excellence in machining; and from manual machining though semi-CNC, up to five-axis milling and seven-axis mill/turn, MEP’s offering is a premium machining service at competitive rates. Its wide range of machining capabilities ensure it selects the appropriate approach to manufacturing complex plastic and metal components, whether it’s small simple parts or larger complex detail parts.
When delivering its manufacturing excellence in plastic and metal working, MEP often works in close partnership with clients, to consistently deliver quality products and the best service. Recognised by its Supply Chain Partners, MEP ensures excellent service levels, high performance and reliability are not only continuously delivered but continuously evolving – as clients demand new and better experiences MEP takes on ideas and offers improved ways of operating.
This is achieved through a combination of its own internal Research and Development programme and involvement in innovation projects – these help MEP to understand the challenges the industry faces and then work on solutions that meet, or better exceed, those needs. A perfect example of this is MEP’s work with AEMTA – Advanced Electrical Machines Technologies for Aircraft. The six partners in this collaborative InnovateUK sponsored project have worked well together to develop the next generation of Advanced Electrical Machines Technologies for Aircraft (www.aemta.co.uk).
From its small beginnings in Terry’s garage, MEP has grown into a multiaward winning manufacturing business that constantly strives to grow its capacity and capabilities to be able to meet the exacting requirements of a growing list of clients. It is clear that the company believes in constantly bettering itself, looking beyond Making Everything Possible, its current capabilities, and striving for new technologies, methods of manufacture and exploring new ideas. As it continues into 2017, and the company welcomes contracts and orders from major clients, its approach to advanced manufacturing and engineering looks set to hold it on a path of continuing success.
Services: Manufacturer specialising in moulding and machining