A PLASTICS firm aims to drive forward in a £50m re-usable packaging market after helping motormouth Jeremy Clarkson and friends get on the road.

Plastic Mouldings Northern has invested in a 14,000sq ft storage base, which now houses more than 6,000 pallets and plastic boxes.

Bosses say the work already accounts for 30 per cent of the Bishop Auckland-based firm’s £2.3m sales.

However, sales director Freddy Bourdais wants to expand further, citing its provision of plastic storage to the production team behind Clarkson’s online TV show The Grand Tour.

The business supplied boxes after being contacted by officials with a last-minute request during filming in Whitby last year.

Mr Bourdais said: “They called us on the Friday afternoon as they were filming on the Saturday and the weather forecast wasn’t good, so they needed more outside storage to protect their filming equipment.

“We supplied the plastic boxes to them on the Saturday morning and their filming went ahead as planned, so it was a great result all round.

“We’re one of the largest stockists of re-usable plastic boxes and pallets in the North-East, and because we have so much choice in stock ready to go it means we can supply the next day, which is a fairly unique service.”

The company has also supplied boxes to Pinewood Studios, and, over the years, sent more than 200 boxes to store 10,000 naan breads for the Jalsa Salana, an annual gathering of more than 600,000 Muslims in Hampshire.

Its reputation extends further, however, with deals in place to support libraries, prisons, schools, food processing and packaging companies and even worm breeders, as well as firms in the automotive and aerospace industries.

Mr Bourdais added: “There’s a misconception that plastic pallets are a lot more expensive than wood.

“However, they provide a lot more protection to products they’re storing and can save manufacturers a lot of money in the long-run.”

The Northern Echo previously revealed the business had identified a plot to expand in a £1m investment that could take its workforce to around 40 in the next five years.

The firm has also built up an industry reputation for supplying Jouplast adjustable risers, which ensure decking and paving slabs sit even, having gained an exclusivity agreement to distribute the equipment across Britain.