Toy firm leads in new compliance scheme

David Johnson and Paul Bennett of HTI, Neil Simms of Lancashire Trading Standards and, right, David Scott of Lancashire Trading Standards

David Johnson and Paul Bennett of HTI, Neil Simms of Lancashire Trading Standards and, right, David Scott of Lancashire Trading Standards

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A Fylde coast toy maker has become only the second in the country to get a new Government seal of approval.

Fleetwood based HTI, the UK’s largest privately owned designer and manufacturer of children’s toys, has officially entered into a Primary Authority Agreement with Lancashire Trading Standards.

The agreement is for product safety of toys, wheeled and personal protection equipment under European Safety Standards enforced by the UK Trading Standards Office.

It was countersigned by the Secretary of State for the Department of Business Innovation and Skills, Sajid Javid MP.

It effectively confirms a partnership between HTI and Lancashire Trading Standards as a legally binding agreement throughout the UK.

The Copse Road-based toy firm founded in 1952 is the first toy firm in Lancashire and the second in the UK to have achieved this status.

Run by the Better Regulation Delivery Office within the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, the agreement effectively cements a statutory partnership between HTI and Lancashire Trading Standards. This Primary Authority partnership will provide legally binding, consistent and assured advice that must be adhered to by other local regulatory authorities across the UK when carrying out inspections or addressing non-compliance.

Essentially once HTI’s products have been approved under the scheme, they will have assured compliance throughout the UK. HTI’s regional quality assurance manager for the EU, David Johnson, said: “The achievement of this agreement with Lancashire Trading Standards follows an 18-month process during which HTI has undergone a number of thorough audits by the Lancashire Trading Standards Authority.

“These entail a comprehensive assessment of the company’s technical files and competences.

“Our partnership will also have a massive impact on efficiencies for HTI as costly and timely duplications of effort between various local authorities will now be eliminated with a consistent standard supported and endorsed by the Primary Authority.”

HTI supplies role-play toys, wheeled toys, vehicles, pocket money with some of the biggest children’s license brands such as Disney Frozen, Minions, My Little Pony, Peppa Pig, Disney, Barbie, JCB, and Silver Cross.