RB to unveil new £105m Hull research centre 'by end of June'
The centre is expected to open by the end of June
By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 10 Apr 2019
RB’s new £105 million research and development centre in Hull is expected to open before the end of June.
The Centre for Scientific Excellence, at RB’s site in Dansom Lane, is the consumer health giant’s single biggest investment in its history.
Plans for the new facility first surfaced back in 2014, when then-Chancellor George Osborne said the centre would help the UK become “a world leader in science and innovation.”
It was originally earmarked to be unveiled by the end of 2018, but was pushed back.
Dr Bruce Charlesworth, research and development site lead at RB, has now confirmed the new £105 million facility is expected to open by the end of the second quarter of the year.
Speaking about the development, he said: “The main thing for us has been getting the quality right. These are health care products which we will be developing in the centre, so it is critical everything is correct.
“We are in the final stages, I think it is fair to say, and it is really just about putting the finishing touches on everything before we move in.”
The centre will include a suite of new laboratories, and new facilities to help RB’s scientists provide better data during product development.
It will also house one of Europe’s biggest stability testing suites, allowing RB to better evaluate its products up to three years after manufacture.
Mr Charlesworth previously said the new centre would also allow the company to conduct testing of products without the risk of stock running short in shops at the same time.
He said: “We have got to keep stock of the big products in all the shops, and previously when we have been doing testing there has been the risk of stocking problems.
“The centre will also enable us to be more connected to our consumers. They will be able to see, touch and smell products in a way they haven’t been able to before.”
RB has a long and proud history in Hull.
In 1840, Isaac Reckitt rented a starch mill in the city, in a move which would go on to form business Reckitt & Sons.
Decades later, in 1913, Reckitt & Sons merged with J&J Colman to become Reckitt & Colman Ltd.
The company continued to grow, until in 1999 it joined forces with German company Benckiser to form Reckitt Benckiser.