Sites including Sellafield, Magnox and Dounreay will be supplied with under-the-hook lifting gear, such as shackles, eyebolts and slings, under the £2m deal.

Speedy Hire will also be providing on-site support to client employees, along with training, inspection services and on-site equipment repair, in a bid to expand their nuclear customer base.

Having already supplied Sellafield and several other clients in the nuclear sector, Martin Rusher, operations director for Speedy Engineering Services appreciates the critical nature of some of the support required.

“The very nature of nuclear decommissioning work such as those at Sellafield often requires very sensitive lifting operations in which there is little margin for error,” said Rusher.

“Each lifting task requires both careful logistical planning and the use of reliable, specialist equipment. It’s also vital that operatives are fully trained in how to use each piece of kit to help complete work effectively and efficiently.

After selling the loss-making temporary accommodation arm of its business to modular space and storage firm Elliott earlier this year, Speedy Hire Group is looking for other opportunities for growth.

It has increased its operating cash flow through refinancing of debt facilities and believes this will give it the flexibility for such growth, which is especially important now since one of its larger contracts with Network Rail recently expired.

“The nuclear sector is a key growth area for us,” added Rusher, “and one in which we can provide tailored lifting support packages such as this agreement with Sellafield, which is our biggest within the decommissioning sector to date.”