British discount chain TJ Morris (aka Home Bargains) is the second largest independent grocer in the UK with over 370 stores.

Rapid business growth has resulted in the need for larger warehouses, and with exciting expansion plans for the next few years, the company plans to grow its store portfolio to an impressive 700 outlets.

The retailer therefore enlisted the expertise of construction specialist Bowmer & Kirkland and industrial door and loading bay manufacturer Hörmann to develop its new £12m regional distribution centre in Liverpool last year.

The 200,000 sq.ft unit is located opposite TJ Morris’s existing high bay warehouse facility. The design features 21 loading bays, complete with dock levellers, shelters, bumpers, traffic lights and wheel guides.

With the potential to service up to 700 stores in the next few years, the new Liverpool warehouse and distribution centre’s loading bays needed to be able to withstand frequent, day-to-day use from a variety of vehicles, lift trucks and other materials handling equipment.

As TJ Morris’s fleet encompasses lorries with different loading heights, a solution with hydraulic dock levellers was the best choice, as lorry tail lifts can be moved underneath the dock levellers, which is also useful for the loading of heavy goods.

Hörmann’s HTL 2 telescopic lip dock leveller allows the retailer’s pallets to be situated at the end of the vehicle’s loading surface, thus providing a better use of loading space. The telescopic lip can be extended and retracted in a targeted manner via separate control buttons, and can be easily controlled on the loading surface.

Another clever way TJ Morris manages multiple vehicles is by using Hörman’s longer dock shelters with inflatable heads. These adjust to a lorry’s size and create a seal around the trailer, irrespective of size, so they can be customised to most situations.

High-quality top and side flaps are mounted on a galvanized, compressible steel frame, which results in a stable, flexible and robust construction. The scissor arm design ensures a higher degree of pre-tensioning, as the springs are pressed in parallel, which helps to increase the pressure of the cladding after the loading process. As well as providing increased insulation, these types of dock shelters minimise rainwater run-off in adverse weather conditions, helping to reduce any slip hazards.

TJ Morris has also opted for three specific dock shelters that utilise Hörmann’s DOBO system. The solution allows trucks to dock on a loading bay before opening the rear doors, meaning the goods remain fully protected inside the vehicle to lower energy costs, prevent theft and help maintain the correct temperature.

As loading takes place around the clock, Hörmann’s DT dock seals were specifically incorporated, due to their premium grade material that consists of 2mm thick polyester with a special woven inlay that is coated with UVPC on both sides.

The site also uses two Hörmann HS 7030 PU spiral doors, as they are characterised by their high thermal insulation, fast opening speed and safety light grilles. Featuring non-contact roll-up technology and a PU-foamed door leaf that has a UD-value of 1.95 W/(m²K), the 42mm double-skinned steel door reaches an opening speed of up to 2.5 m/sec and a maximum closing speed of 0.5 m/sec.

In addition, a Hörmann fire shutter and 22 industrial sectional SPU F42 doors have been installed.

McLaren Construction and Hörmann have also been working together on TJ Morris’s new 700,000 sq.ft distribution centre in Amesbury, Wiltshire, in order to assist with the retailer’s expansion plans in the south.

The £70m site in Solstice Park is a replica of the same sized facility that opened a decade ago at its original headquarters on the edge of Liverpool, and features an impressive 76 loading bays and 92 sectional doors.

For more information on Hörmann’s suite of loading bay products, visit hormann.co.uk

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