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Small busiess.

Tyneside & northumberland

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insite environments, Newcastle

INSITE Environments is a 14-year-old company in Newcastle which has built a strong business as a small but innovative urban, landscape and environmental design company.

The firm, which employs 28 people and turns over more than pounds 1m a year, says that to emphasise its strong suit in virtual reality and 3D modelling, it uses the line "visualising and realising".

This encompasses its distinctive way of working, which allows lay people to see and influence what a development will look like before the design is fixed or built.

While its core services may be summarised as creative public realm design, in reality this has meant everything from the layout and detailing of the new Newcastle Quayside, to the concept, design and installation of the contemporary steel, granite and glass street furniture in Grainger Town in Newcastle and perhaps playing a part in Grey Street being voted Best Street in Britain by Radio 4 listeners.

Current commissions vary widely from The Sage's Performance Square, through restoring Seaham Hall's historic park to Northumbria's new Manors campus, to windfarm and visual impact commissions across the UK and overseas.

Much of its work is currently delivered to the heart of the Government's agenda for change in urban regeneration, education, health, airport expansion and other transport initiatives.

It also offers consultancy services to energy and waste management utilities and in the masterplanning and design of flagship commercial developments.

DURHAM & WEARSIDE

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CRAFTER'S COMPANION, Coundon

THIS newly-established partnership, which employs two full-time and two part-time staff, has become a leading designer, manufacturer and supplier of products to the arts and craft sector.

Established in September 2005, the online company sells its products ( everything from craft CD Roms to pots of glue ( to the public and to wholesalers throughout the UK.

After extensive research, the company realised that hand-held envelope-making devices on the market were not hitting the mark.

It has created an innovative manufacturing aid called The Enveloper to allow crafters to make envelopes at home.

Crafter's launched the product via the Ideal World shopping channel, on its website and through trade outlets throughout the country.

This product innovation has resulted in a sharp rise in turnover and created a foundation for the company to bring other new products to market.

The arts and craft industry has experienced significant growth over the last 10 years and was recently quoted as being one of the fastest-growing industries in the 21st Century.

Crafter's Companion has invested significant time and effort into new market and product research and used its findings to develop a range of new products.

TEES VALLEY

SPONSORED BY BUSINESS LINK

CLEVELAND BIOTECH, Stockton

A NATURAL solution to pollution problems lies at the core of this company.

Cleveland Biotech, which has 15 staff, breeds micro-organisms which can be used to destroy wastes such as grease, oil and ammonia.

One way to use its bacteria is in hotel and restaurant kitchens to prevent fat blocking drains.

When put in the pipes, it feeds on the fat and creates enzymes which break it down. Its current export market concentrates on Eastern Europe but it has sold into the USA and has growing sales in Australia.

The company works closely with water utilities, the food and dairy industry, refineries and chemical companies.

It is steadily developing an international network of distributors and exploring new areas for use of its expertise.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:May 12, 2006
Words:573
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