James' work at Sellafield helps him make a positive difference to the UK.
Rob has brought his passion for manufacturing to Cumbria
Rob Batstone, Plant Director at Kimberly-Clark, lives in Milnthorpe
After working for a number of blue-chip companies in the UK, Rob is delighted to take over the reins at Kimberly-Clark in Barrow.
After moving from McVitie’s in Glasgow, Rob is keen to bring his perspective and his passion for manufacturing to his new role in Cumbria.
“I began working in the chemical industry as an engineer and was promoted to Plant Manager early on in my career,” said Rob, who is originally from Manchester. “I got a real passion for the interaction between people and equipment.
“It’s also very important to me to produce something of value. In my career, I’ve made biscuits, cheesecake and beer, and worked for major blue-chip companies such as Mars, Gillette and Pepsi, as well as own label providers such as Bakkavor.
“I’ve worked as an operator on the shop floor and been a director of a business as well.
“I have a huge passion for manufacturing and I hope to make a real contribution to Kimberly-Clark.
“The site has a proud history and heritage over 50 years in Barrow, and I was looking for an opportunity to build capability and contribute to the company’s success.
“I strive for excellence in every area of manufacturing, so how do I help the site continue its high performance level so we continue to attract the best people, get the best investment from Kimberly-Clark and deliver for the next 50 years.
“There are so many hard-working people here. I’ve met really impressive people across every team and department with real passion and pride for the site, so we need to continue to leverage that.
“I want to ensure a bright future for the mill over the next 50 years through positive engagement of the workforce and working together positively and passionately with drive and determination to deliver something really special.”
Rob is already familiar with Cumbria after being introduced to the county as a child, but is looking forward to living and working in the region.
“I did my Duke of Edinburgh in Cumbria and been up Scafell Pike more times than I care to remember,” he said.
“At university, I met someone called Roger from Barrow so I’ve known about the town since I was 18. I never visited, but he talked about Barrow very positively.
“In my first week here, I drove around Walney to have a look around and the views are fantastic.
“Everyone in Cumbria has been so friendly and welcoming, which makes it a great place to live and work.”
Rob is planning to enjoy an outdoor lifestyle in the county with wife Rebecca and their son, Matthew.
“I have a real connection to the Lake District,” he said. “I’ve started mountain biking and my son likes it, too, so hopefully we’ll do more of that here.
“There’s so many things for families to do in Cumbria with the Roxy Cinema in Ulverston, Brewery Arts Centre in Kendal and museums in Barrow.
“We’re introducing Matthew to different things and different people, and living in Cumbria gives him the best start in life to explore. He already looks really happy here.
“For anyone considering a relocation to Cumbria, I’d advise you to come here and have a look - you’ll be hugely impressed.”