160 Years of Sykes Pumps
When Henry Sykes traded Sheffield for London to found a small engineering business on Upper Thames Street, few could have envisaged the company’s status today.
By 1900, Sykes’ organisation had already worked on some of the city’s highest profile pumping schemes. Business headquarters were transferred to Southwark, coinciding with the introduction of several new innovations that became synonymous with the name Henry Sykes.
Prior to the 20th century, his prospering firm was registered as a Private Limited Company under the stewardship of Henry Sykes Jr.
The First World War unsurprisingly had the potential to be a destabilising time for the company – particularly as many employees had been conscripted. Amazingly, some of the remaining workmen helped design and construct special rolling-friction winches which allowed Allied forces to pinpoint enemy locations!
The interwar period saw the acquisition of 51 acres of Greenwich marshland, adjoining the Woolwich Road at Charlton. Even now – 90 years on – Sykes retain an extremely strong presence in the area, which is where our flagship depot is based.
Stakeholder and long-term staff member Edmond Jackson died the year the Second World War broke out, but was recognised as the inventor of several revolutionary machines during an association that exceeded four decades.
Once again, Sykes played a significant role during the ensuing six years of international conflict – this time by assisting the construction of steel masts that would house radar installations for British Army intelligence.
Even more remarkably, however, was the rapidity with which pumps were supplied after MOD units failed. Without them, the Mulberry Harbours (widely considered one of the World War II’s greatest engineering accomplishments) would undoubtedly have sunk.
1957 marked the company’s centenary year and it was also around this time that another major development – the ‘Univac’ pump – was introduced to market. Many generations of the Univac product have since been developed with the current adaptation still prominently available.
Fifteen years on, and with the company still going from strength to strength, Sykes unveiled our first submersible pumps.
Domestic growth prompted expansion overseas, with Sykes venturing to the Middle East by the mid-1970s. Following two unconnected procurements, the Braithwaite Group merged Henry Sykes Ltd with the well-established Andrews Heat for Hire to form what we know today as Andrews Sykes.
The company’s reputation has continued to flourish, and in the last twenty years Sykes Pumps have been responsible for an incredible number of huge developments both in the UK and abroad.
It remains to be seen exactly what the future may hold for the organisation but maintaining a steady level of progress and expanding our international presence remain two constant targets.
Blog Live Feed
Groundwater remedy keeps residential development on track
As the country’s leading provider of temporary pump hire solutions, it’s fair to say we’re very well acquainted with dewatering applications and everything they entail. Dewatering is a blanket term that refers to the removal of groundwater or surface water from an excavation site, and there are various techniques that might be adopted in order ...
Sykes Pumps: offering units for sale as well as hire
You’ll probably be aware that we offer pump rental solutions to customers across all market sectors, but did you know that we can also sell almost every unit displayed on our website? We even sell products that aren’t listed online, which is good news for anyone looking to purchase equipment from the country’s largest pumps ...
Sykes Pumps provides over-pumping solution for local council
Sykes Pumps was recently approached by a major building and civil engineering company and asked to help assist with the repair of a local culvert. Before work could take place, our engineers were required to provide an immediate pumping solution to over-pump the stream – cleaning out all the silt build-up and then removing old ...Download Case Study
Sykes’ dewatering expertise opens the door to residential development in Somerset
Before work could commence on the proposed construction of 110 new homes in Sedgemoor, it was essential that a lake on the designated land was drained to facilitate the next steps. Although the lake itself was reasonably small in size, our customer was looking to permanently remove contained water from the excavation area as quickly ...
Sykes Pumps help leading university with construction project
When one of West Sussex’s leading universities had plans to develop a new engineering and technological facility, Sykes Pumps was on hand to provide a temporary over-pumping solution to help facilitate the project. The scheme in question was taking place on a live university campus so required an immediate pump hire solution to assist with ...Download Case Study
Everything you need to know about accessories when hiring pumps
Sykes Pumps offers an extensive range of pumps for hire from its locations all around the UK. In addition to the pumps available for hire, it is important that they are supported by a comprehensive fleet of ancillaries to provide a genuine pumping solution capability across a wide range of applications. Accessories should not be ...
Groundwater removal paves the way for luxury spa
A specialist framework contractor frequently entrusted with high-risk developments sought the assistance of an equally trustworthy pumps supplier in order to complete a project in Oxfordshire. As part of plans to improve facilities on the site of a Grade II Listed country estate, our client was asked to lay foundations for a new health and ...
Our engineers are on standby to handle your emergency pumping and drying needs
The Met Office has warned of a potential ‘danger to life’ when Storm Eunice hits, with wind speeds of up to 100mph expected to sweep most of the UK. As a result, a second red weather warning – the rarest and most severe alert – has been issued to cover London and the southeast of ...
Sykes Pumps provides emergency pumping solution for house building contractor
At Sykes Pumps, we’re used to receiving last-minute callouts. Our ability to handle projects at short notice is the reason so many customers know they can rely on us when things go wrong. So, when East Sussex based house-building contractor required us to supply an urgent pumping rental scheme, they contacted us at the eleventh ...Download Case Study
Andrews Sykes makes an appearance on Sky Sports!
The more eagle-eyed of those who tuned in to this week’s Edinburgh Derby will have spotted our branding appear on the hoardings at various points during the match. As proud club partners, we were delighted to have rotating logos feature on Hibernian FC’s new LED advertising system during one of the most highly anticipated fixtures ...