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Romar Innovate Limited, was originally founded as Romar Workwear Limited, in 1987, by John and Linda Rowlands.
John and Linda founded Romar Workwear Limited in 1987, they set up in an ex brewery, occupying 2,000 square feet, and by the end of the first year Linda left her secure employment to run the business full time.


The business grew leading to John also leaving his job to join Linda in the business. By 1990, John and Linda were running Romar full time between themselves and employed nine staff. As the business expanded, and new staff were required, Romar based its offices and front of house from the Old Brewery in which it was established, a unit at Workington was utilised as and a unit at Frizington, near the brewery where polytection and PVC were established as official production lines within Romar. This allowed John and Linda another 2,000 square feet to accommodate the now 14 staff. 

Over the next seven years Romar developed new products and offerings to the supply chain, whilst also becoming and established distributor of standard PPE items. Over the years 1987-1997 Romar went from 80% manufacture and 20% distribution, to 80% distribution and 20% manufacture. This was not because manufacture had decreased in size, the increase in distribution was due to the award of the first Sellafield single source contract in 1997.

During the following ten years from 1987-1997, there were many more new and innovative products developed at Romar, which catered for requirements on our customers sites. These innovations were pivotal not only to the success of Romar as an innovative company, but also as excellent real workplace solutions for our customers. As part of this expansion Romar had to move premises to Sneakyeat at Hensingham, vacating the units at Workington and Frizington and moving into one big unit, occupying 14,000 square feet and accommodating 25 employees.

The first single source contract was embraced by Romar, and Romar Workwear Ltd became a serious local employer. Although this was Romars major success at the time, Linda Rowlands also implemented ISO:9001 and Romar was one of the first local Sellafield suppliers to achieve this standard at the time. This accreditation was implemented while John and Linda managed their business through the first eighteen months of the single source contract - which saw the size of their business increase organically by over 400%. With the growth, Romar expanded into unit, after unit, at Sneakyeat.

By 1999 the Sellafield contract had been managed with great success and at the first stage of renewal, it was re-awarded to Romar. This time, Springfields, a major nuclear plant near Preston put their PPE out to tender, for which Romar formulated a successful bid. At this time Romars premises at Sneakyeat had expanded to cover the majority of the industrial estate it occupied, and was still over capacitated, eventually a decision had to be made about relocating to a larger premises. pre

Romar then moved to a new location, which is our current base Ivy Mill in Whitehaven, which had ample space for us to expand into, occupying 34,000 square feet and accommodating our 50 employees to service our business. 

Around this time Romar opened an onsite trade shop, which took off with great success. This shop provided personal protective equipment and uniforms to local businesses and tradesmen passing by.

In 2007 Romar launched a repositioning strategy in that the workwear element of our name, had become somewhat outdated and did not fully reflect the full nature of our business. We were often confused in the wider marketplace by customers as just another Workwear company.

Romar are not just a box shifter nor are we just a workwear manufacturer, these are simply elements of a wider service which we provide. Romar can provide all of the boxed bought in goods, but we can also provide bespoke, specially designed products, innovative solutions and technical support. We therefore decided to change out name to Romar Innovate Limited.
2007 also saw the launch of the Romar Innovate Trust Fund. This is a charitable organisation that seeks to give back to the local area in which we do business.

Notably we have supported a local charity called the Rising Sun Trust, which provides rehabilitation services to people who have fallen foul of drug and alcohol addiction. Our funding to this cause over three years allows this charity to go into local schools and educate young people about drugs in an attempt to reduce/eliminate young people becoming involved with them in the first instance. This scheme has proved very successful and was initially launched within one district of Cumbria and has been rolled out county wide. The Know project is intended to educate Cumbrian children. It displays to them real life people who have been either affected directly or indirectly with drug and alcohol addiction. The project in Cumbria has gone from strength to strength and in some cases over subscribed. The Romar Innovate Trust Fund is one of the sponsors of the KNOW PROJECT and donates a considerable amount year on year to this cause. For more information on the Romar Innovate Trust please visit our website at

January 2010 saw Romar winning our first ever nationwide nuclear contract for the provision of Workplace Safety and Personal Protective Equipment. This contract involves delivering to a multitude of nuclear sites across the UK from Dounreay in the North of Scotland to Winfrith on the South coast.

In December 2010, Romar achieved registration to ISO 18001:2007 to for our Occupational Health and Safety Management system, which, when added to our ISO 14001: 2004 Registration in January 2010 and our ISO 9001: 2008, means that we are one of the few companies in our sector to achieve the prestigious triple registration status.
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