Celebration marks 50th anniversary

A Blyth-based company celebrated 50 years in business with a special event this week.

Safety and medical solutions provider Dräger marked its anniversary occasion with a gathering of 600 business leaders and specially invited guests on Tuesday afternoon.

And among those in attendance was company chairman Stefan Dräger.

He gave a talk on the company’s future growth plans – with aims to nearly double UK sales over the next seven years.

There was also an exhibition of items the company has manufactured over the years.

One of the products on show was be the original breathing apparatus used by Sir Edmund Hillary and sherpa Tenzing Norgay, which was instrumental in helping them climb to the summit of Mount Everest in 1953.

This jewel from the Dräger archive was designed and manufactured at Blyth.

Dräger was also the first company to invent the breathalyser, and regional police chiefs attending the event saw some of the original devices used as well as today’s sophisticated equipment.

Dräger’s managing director in the UK, Mike Norris, said: “We are extremely proud to be celebrating 50 years of business in the UK.

“The spirit of innovation has been at the heart of our company since its inception and that fact remains as true today.

“Our products make a real difference to people’s lives – saving and protecting them on a daily basis.

“It was wonderful to be able to celebrate and share our achievements with so many of our loyal customers, friends and staff at this special event.

“We are now looking forward to the next 50 years of success and growth.”

Since setting up a UK base in 1963, the Lübeck-based company has contributed significantly to the regional economy and local community.

Dräger’s Blyth site quickly became a worldwide centre of excellence for specialist manufacture of breathing apparatus and now supplies hundreds of professional firefighting teams all over the world.