Wigtownshire farming firm cultivates success with support from Clydesdale Bank

FW Awards 2015, Contractor  Category. Russell and Lorraine Gaw'Photo credit - Jim Varney
FW Awards 2015, Contractor Category. Russell and Lorraine Gaw'Photo credit - Jim Varney

A Wigtownshire agricultural contractor is cultivating growth opportunities, thanks to support from Clydesdale Bank.

RG Contracting, based in the seaside village of Port William, secured a five figure funding package from Clydesdale at short notice when they required new equipment to undertake a contract 170 miles away in Coupar Angus, Perthshire. Unusually, the paperwork was completed over the weekend to ensure that Russell and Lorraine Gaw, owners of RG Contracting, were able to secure the contract.

The deal was delivered by Eileen Hornell, relationship manager in the Bank’s Dumfries and Galloway’s Business and Private Banking team.

Founded in 1994 by husband and wife team Russell and Lorraine, RG Contracting now employ 10 full time workers, as well as temporary staff during peak season. The business supplies a wide range of farming services with silage accounting for 40% of its business. It also spreads up to 100 million gallons of slurry annually.

Despite the challenges of its remote geographical location RG Contracting has around 130 customers spread across Scotland. As business continues to grow, RG must regularly renew and replace machinery including tractors, forage equipment and diggers. It has also invested in a Vervaet beet harvester to work in Coupar Angus.

Lorraine said: “Having the right machinery is crucial to a business like ours, which offers services to farms that don’t have the equipment or resources to carry out the job themselves.

“Fortunately, Clydesdale Bank’s team understands the agricultural industry, how it works and what we need in order to be successful and achieve our growth aspirations. When we wanted to invest in new equipment they acted immediately to assist us and ensure we had the necessary facilities in place.

“Their specialist knowledge has been a real boost for us and we really appreciate the lengths to which Clydesdale Bank goes to support us.”

RG Contracting was recently shortlisted as Contractor of the Year in the prestigious Farmers Weekly Awards.

David Hannon, Head of Agribusiness at Clydesdale Bank, said: “RG Contracting is an ambitious and well managed agricultural business.

“Eileen Hornell, the firm’s relationship manager, has worked closely with Russell and Lorraine to help them achieve their growth plans. The company’s expansion highlights the value of Clydesdale Bank’s approach and shows what can be achieved when there is a strong partnership. Russell and Lorraine have created jobs in a remote community and are now the biggest employer locally.

“Our specialist knowledge of and focus on different sectors helps to bring a challenge to the market giving small and medium sized business the speed and flexibility they require to fulfil their growth ambitions.”