THE biggest employer in Chard could be set to add up to 300 more jobs after revealing expansion plans.

Numatic has launched a consultation for their new growth plans, after setting out its aims to increase turnover by 30 per cent in the next five years.

The company, which is most famous for its Henry vaccums, purchased a 12 acre site in Chard in 1989 having run out of space at their old home in Beaminster, Dorset.

This had increased to 26 acres by the end of 2017, and now additional land purchases for their newest expansion has seen Numatic’s land increase to 34 acres.

Production output has increased eight-fold since 1989, while the total number of employees has increased four-fold and is now close to 1,000 permanent staff and, currently, more than 100 agency staff.

Sales turnover is now 10 times more than in 1989.

Garry Shortland, the mayor of Chard, said: “We previously turned down this site for a housing development because of the proximity to Numatic of the noise.

“That wouldn’t make it a nice area to live.

“Given the fact this is office-based, I think that they have taken into account the people who live in Nursery Gardens.

“I think it is good that we have this major expansion coming.

“This is Chard’s largest employer and they are obviously willing to put more resources into the town.”

With a number of housing developments current being considered by South Somerset District Council, Cllr Shortland said this expansion could also help to provide jobs for some of the town’s growing population in the long run.

A spokesman for Numatic said: “The current total factory area is just over 50,000 square metres.

“The proposed developments on the Crewkerne Road site equate to a roughly a third increase on this.

“To achieve the target growth, we will need extra buildings and an estimated 200 to 300 jobs will be created.

“Output is currently operating at 100 per cent of capacity, which equates to around 6,000 ‘units’ a day.

“A ‘unit’ can be a mopping trolley, a vacuum cleaner or a £10,000, ride-on scrubber-dryer.”

Although the application includes eight buildings, only three will be built in the first phase of development.

These buildings will “bring together the various functions of the Research and Development department”.

For more information, visit