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Steelite International`s Production Director Retires

16 January 2009

After nearly 40 years with Steelite International Bernard Matthews, Product Director, is retiring. Chris Sawyer, Steelite International’s Operations Manager, and his team explain the exceptional contribution Matthews has made to the company:

“Bernard has been with the company for nearly 40 years and at the head of the factory for the last 25 years, he is a very passionate and highly motivating individual, who has driven, energised and inspired a generation of factory personnel from individual team members to managers and senior managers.

“He is a very intuitive, instinctive and hard-working man, whose commitment is unquestionable. Bernard has been described as the "Alex Ferguson of the ceramics industry", recognising his team’s strengths and areas for improvement; forging paths for each one, enabling them to excel and continually improve, resulting in achieving their individual goals and importantly Steelite's business objectives and overall success. Once he has set a goal he will not stop or rest until it has been achieved.

“A charismatic, flamboyant and decisive character whose uncompromising nature and extremely high standards are complimented by an ability to listen to individuals problems, always offering advice, not always as expected or predicted!

“Bernard is a unique person with a wealth of experience and knowledge in all aspects of ceramics and the Steelite International business as a whole.

“He has a phenomenal memory and rarely faces a problem he has not encountered before. When unexpected situations occur Bernard usually has an amusing story to tell relating to the current scenario.

“In his position as Production Director he still is a very down to earth and approachable individual who has earned the respect and admiration of every employee within Steelite International and many more outside.

“When Bernard retires Steelite International will be losing a major driving force and a mass of experience and knowledge.

“To sum up, Bernard Matthews is a task master, a mass of energy, a motivator, a man of his word, a friend, an inspiration, an icon.”

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