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Sapphire opens £5m ‘BUPA of car hospitals’

Environmental innovations feature heavily at Sapphire Garage’s new £5 million second bodyshop.

It has 80,000 sq ft of workspace and efficient heating and lighting systems.

The company’s other bodyshop in Gorton, Manchester will stay open.

Managing director Tony Arnone opened the new premises in April because Sapphire has taken on six more contracts.

He said: “We wanted to raise the profile for bodyshops. This site is right on the main road and is like the BUPA of car hospitals and makes people realise we are serious about car body repair.”

The company funded the new building without applying for environmental grants and loans.

It has 140 working bays, four recovery vehicles, parking outside for 300 vehicles, seven body jigs and nine spray booths, including two for high vehicles, and a glass specialist.

Specialist lighting automatically dims during the day and brightens as it gets darker. The old site costs about £1,000 a month to heat, but the more energy efficient new bodyshop should cost half this. Everything from cardboard to car parts will be recycled.

Sapphire took on 17 staff due to the expansion and now employs 67 people across the two sites.

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