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University helps safeguard jobs at Fife paper mill

A Fife paper mill has been given a new lease of life by the University of St Andrews.

Leslie-based Sapphire Mill has said that it will be able to protect jobs and create new employment opportunities, thanks to a generous donation by the University.

The support comes in the form of a range of paper-making equipment left over from the closure of the paper mill at Guardbridge in Fife. The University inherited the machinery when it bought the mill site two years ago.

When St Andrews staff were clearing out the mill recently, Sapphire Mill bosses made a plea for any unwanted equipment and the University was only too happy to help.

Roddy Yarr, the University’s Environment and Energy Manager explained, “As part of our clearing out of the buildings at Guardbridge, we had identified various items from the former paper-making process that are of no use to the University. We could have sent the equipment for recycling or worse still, to landfill, but we realised the goods would be of great assistance to another paper maker.

“When Fourstones made contact with us, we were delighted to help; it’s the perfect way to put the equipment to good use in the local area and to help out this exciting new papermaking venture”.

The Fourstones group, established in Northumberland in 1763, is one of the oldest paper manufacturers in the UK. When it opened up operations in Leslie in late 2010, the Sapphire Mill brought history back to life in the historic papermaking town. Sapphire Mill is currently the only paper mill in Scotland using 100% post consumer waste paper to manufacture paper products.

Peter Duxbury, Managing Director of Fourstones commented, “I would like to thank the University of St Andrews for giving us the opportunity to salvage the remaining pieces of equipment and spare parts from the former Guardbridge paper mill site before the site is redeveloped.

“The equipment will be of great value in the development of our papermaking operations at Sapphire Mill, Leslie, and will help to protect both existing employment and create new jobs as we expand our operations on the site.”

The University has plans to develop the Guardbridge site as a base for an energy centre and other associated uses.

ENDS

Roddy Yarr is available for interview on 07950 203838 or try@st-andrews.ac.uk


Issued by the University of St Andrews
Contact Gayle Cook, Senior Communications Manager on 01334 467227, email gec3@st-andrews.ac.uk
Ref: Paper mill 270212

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