Friday, 1 September 2017

Jobs from the past - Number 95

Regular followers of this blog will know that my first post of every month is a "job from the past" so that I can show some of the really good work from years gone by...

Boots Company Report and Accounts 1997
I was reminded about this project from twenty years ago as this project uses paper made at the Curtis Fine Paper, Guardbridge Paper Mill, which has since closed and now houses the Eden Mill brewery and distillery, which I wrote about below.

Up until the early 2000's the design and printing of company annual report and accounts was VERY big business. In the burgeoning design market of the 1980's and 90's There were many design companies which specialised in just annual reports (the likes of Michael Peter, Bamber Forsyth, Benjamin Rowntree, Radley Yeldar etc) and printers who would specialise in printing them such as Greenaway Harrison, Litho-Tech, Oakley Press, White Dove etc.

Back in those dim and distant days, it was very common for Annual Reports to be divided into the Report - printed on a white paper, printed in four colour process (with photographs!) and the Accounts section - printed on a coloured paper ...and this job follows that pattern.

This is the Report and Accounts for the Boots Company, the group of companies based on the Nottingham chemists founded in 1849 by John Boot. Back in 1997 they were a PLC in the FTSE 100, however ten years ago they were bought by a private equity firm based in Switzerland. The design is by Addison and the printer was Litho-Tech.

The size of the report is 297x180mm, portrait. It has a 4pp cover, which is printed in a blue and is matt laminated.
Below you can see the split between the two sections.
According to my notes, the 36pp front 'report' section was printed on Zanders Megamatt 150gsm, printed in CMYK, possibly with a special and a 'spot gloss machine varnish' which was a highly desirable effect back in those days.
The 44pp 'accounts' section is where I came in! I was briefed by Karen Blades, Production Manager at Addison to provide a bespoke paper to what was described as a 'post it note yellow' shade, which as you can see from the result below, we managed to achieve.
Click on images to enlarge
We decided to work with Curtis Fine Paper, who at the time had two paper mills in Scotland, one at Dalmore and one at Guardbridge, previously they were know as GB Paper. I sent the mill a sample of the colour and the received a couple of 'lab samples' made in the technical department at the mill. These were then forwarded to Addison and eventually to the end client for approval. I've written about what a mill making is here:

In this instance, the mill agreed to make a 2 tonne trial so a small group went to the mill to see the paper as it was being made. This was pretty unusual even in those days! I visited the Guardbridge mill accompanied by Karen Blades from Addison and Derek Adnitt and Les Baker from Litho-Tech printers. As a result we were able to show the client EXACTLY the paper they were getting.

After that trial, Boots were shown the paper, it was approved and then the mill manufactured the remainder of the paper.
 - and back in those days everything was done by fax and fortunately I still have the fax in my archive with the approval...

Click on images to enlarge
The printers called Litho-Tech were based in Kennington, London who at the time was one of the leading corporate printers in London if not the UK. Sadly like many printers of that era, the company no longer exists. It was printed offset litho. My notes aren't completely clear but I recall it was about 16 tonnes . Derek Adnitt was the sales director, Les Baker, the production manager and Paul Watson the Managing Director. Here are the credits which are in the back of the report.
Karen Blades now works at Print Source UK and still spends her time producing quality annual reports!

...a real trip down memory lane!
Posted by Justin Hobson 01.09.2017

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