Tim Fairley, managing director of PDS

Tim Fairley is the boss of one of Rochdale’s biggest success stories.

He’s helped grow the workforce at PDS by 40 to 100 staff in the last 18 months and doesn’t intend to stop there. Based in Littleborough, PDS is a specialist in the manufacture of FD30 and FD60 security fire doors, with the number indicating the minimum minutes of protection the doors must offer against fires.

It’s a remarkable turnaround for PDS, which Fairley co-founded in 2003 and grew to a turnover of £13.5m and a workforce of 148 people when it was acquired by US-based door manufacturer Masonite International Corporation.

However by 2018 turnover had dropped to £7m and the workforce to 60 when Masonite announced it was considering closing the Littleborough facility altogether. Rather than see it close Fairley formed part of a 14-strong consortium that bought the business back in March 2019 and set about transforming its fortunes.

Tim is born and bred in Rochdale and still lives in Littlleborough. The entrepreneur, who attended Littleborough High School, said: “My earliest memory of Rochdale is going to the outside market in the centre of Rochdale.

“What I love about Rochdale is the balance of outstandingly beautiful countryside surroundings, busy town and village centres and the real Rochdalian people

“The town centre redevelopment and improved motorway link at Kingsway have been the biggest improvements to the borough.”

Asked which business people he most admired he said: “The Thompson brothers that I worked for at Dale Joinery many years ago and an old friend of mine Richard McIver at Cleland McIver, which is a fantastic business and large employer in the borough.

“I think Rochdale is good for business for several reasons. It has a history for thriving businesses, an in-built mill town work ethic in the people and of course great location in terms of major road networks.

“I think Rochdale’s best day are ahead it. It has the infrastructure in place to keep driving forwards now.”

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