Webster & Horsfall

Webster & Horsfall, one of the West Midland’s oldest companies, has secured over £710,000 in Research and Development Tax relief.

Company historian Sandy Robertson explained how Webster & Horsfall’s 300-year legacy of manufacturing steel wire and rope has been underpinned by a culture of continuous innovation, originating from the company’s founder John Webster.  “This culture has survived the generations and has ensured the company remains a leader in its field.”

The company’s history is defined by extraordinary achievements which have driven significant periods of growth. These include the development of high carbon steel piano wire (1766); the manufacture of the first successful Trans-Atlantic telephone cable (1865/6); and the development of locked coil and flattened strand ropes for the mining industry (1887).  Today, energy is a key strategic business focus for the company, with its latest innovation, the development of Tyseley Energy Park, with its emphasis on alternative low carbon energy fuels, key to the company’s continuing growth strategy.  Company chairman Charles Horsfall explains: “Our perpetual passion to improve our products has kept this business alive. “Our willingness to take calculated risk, and to collaborate with experts, is evident throughout our history.”

W&H’s Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with the University of Birmingham, is a perfect example of how the company in its recent history has brought about improvements to its technical processes through collaboration.  This project formed an integral part of W&H’s latest R&D Tax Credit claim.  Mark Evans, managing director at R&D Tax Claims Limited, said: “I’ve been advising W&H for almost a decade, and I’m delighted to have secured over £700,000 of Corporation Tax savings. “It’s a privilege to work with such an illustrious company and to make sure it is rewarded for its commitment to research and development.”

Webster & Horsfall’s Finance Director, Robert Horsfall, recalls how he attended a Business Event where Mark Evans was speaking. “I was keen to learn more about the government scheme, initially sceptical as to whether we were eligible, and concerned that if we were, whether it would be too difficult to put a successful application together,” he said.
“It was clear that Mark’s approach was very different, as he worked with a team of industry experts who had a thorough understanding of the manufacturing industry. “We have a dedicated account manager from R&D Tax Claims, who visits us regularly. “He guides and supports us to collect the relevant data, and compiles the final report that is submitted to HMRC.  “With Mark’s expertise we have now made ten successful claims, returning a staggering £710k back to the company, however, the benefits are not just financial, it has also generated an innovative spirit amongst our workforce who continually look to find new ways to improve our processes and products, an ethos that will safeguard the company’s future.”

Robert Horsfall, referring to his R&D claim, concluded: “This is the best thing we’ve ever done. I strongly advise other manufacturing companies to check the scheme out, if they’re not already claiming, but it’s essential to work with an expert, like R&D Tax Claims, as their knowledge of the scheme and the industry is invaluable.”

Sector: Forming
Total Tax Saving: £710,000
Back to Success Stories

R&D Tax Claims Explained


Find out how you can claim from the government tax incentive scheme designed to encourage companies to invest in R&D.

About the Scheme

A government incentive that rewards UK companies for spending on innovation.

Learn More
The Benefits

Receive a cash credit, lowered corporation tax bill or a combination of the two.

Learn More
The Process

Tried and tested process with six easy steps which can be completed in 12 weeks or less.

Learn More
Claim Eligibility

Have you developed new or improved products or processes?

Learn More

Latest News


10th Made in the Midlands Manufacturing Exhibition

Made in the Midlands Manufacturing Exhibition 2019 R&D Tax Claims will be on hand with engineering experts and R&D tax scheme...

Read More

Why Brexit increases the importance of R&D tax relief

First introduced in 2000, Research and development (R&D) tax credits were put in place to encourage innovation and increased spending...

Read More