Digital support helps Darwen firm engineer business growth


Established in 2017 by director Paul Chapman, Darwen-based Vestra Engineering specialises in the fabrication of bespoke stainless steel and mild steel products. Services provided also include TIG and MIG welding, pressure testing, grained, mirror or electro polishing and CNC cutting. Products are made for a range of client sectors including food manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, retail and hospitality – from counter tops and kitchen equipment to street signs. Paul runs the family business with his son and fellow company director and owner, Chris.

In the early stages of trading Vestra Engineering had a basic website in place, however it wasn’t the effective marketing tool required to truly meet the objectives of the business; to showcase products, demonstrate knowledge, skills and experience, attract new clients and establish a reputation of being a credible and trustworthy company.  

It was clear to Paul he’d need a new, more professional looking website in order to increase awareness of the company’s products and services and ultimately grow the business within its target sectors, and potentially beyond.   


In order to achieve his objectives, Paul called upon the services of Digital First, a team of digital specialists and students from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) which helps promote and achieve growth through a range of digital tools and tactics.

Led by Daniel Livingstone, Project Manager, the Digital First ERDF team began a four-month project with the aim of developing a brand-new website through which the business could effectively promote its key services and products, target potential new clients and keep contacts aware of industry developments. With a website often the first impression a business makes on a prospective customer, it was important for the new platform to position Vestra Engineering as a serious competitor within its marketplace, enabling it to stand out and become the go-to provider. Selecting the right type of visual content was a priority – as it needed to accurately reflect the types of products on offer, with the aim of driving enquiries and generating more customer leads. 


As a result of the project, Vestra Engineering now has a new, modern, professional website which effectively showcases the business and what it has to offer. A news section allows the site to be kept updated with fresh content to ensure visitors spend more time browsing, while a live Twitter feed and links to the company’s social media channels encourages customer interaction and engagement – showcasing the personable side of the family business while providing a ‘behind the scenes’ look. The site also features several calls to action, including free quote and contact us forms, encouraging potential clients to enquire.

Since the website went live, Paul has noticed an increase in website traffic including visitors from overseas, indicating a potential option to move into exporting should the opportunity arise in the future. 

Paul said: “I would recommend the services of Digital First to other businesses looking to achieve their digital objectives. The team was always responsive to our requirements, making the process painless. As we are welders and fabricators, the things we do are not glamorous, but the results are a site which brings us into the digital age. It showcases not only that our products are very varied, but that we are capable of producing what the customer requires.”

About Digital First

The Digital First project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), and provides business support services including digital strategy, app development, website evaluation and redesign, social media support, videography, CPD and training systems and camera drone photography.

For more information, contact Daniel Livingstone, Project Manager at Digital First ERDF, on 01772 895855 or or Madeleine Melling, Marketing and PR Officer at Digital First ERDF, on 01772 895654 or


Digital First