Operating out of Athlone, Co Westmeath, Tony Knight & Sons Ltd provide all types of construction and building works on a nationwide basis. Building Ireland spoke with Elton Knight (director) to hear more about the company, its projects and the impact the Covid-19 pandemic had on its business.
Business is good these days at Tony Knight & Sons Ltd and the plan for the Knight family and the rest of the team at 1 Glenavon Terrace, Athlone is to try and keep things that way right through to next year.
With nine full-time staff on its books, the company’s team consists of many highly qualified tradesmen and the services on offer include new builds, roofing and extensions and renovations.
Managing Director Tony Knight has some 50 years’ experience in the building industry and his sons Elton and Anthony have followed in his footsteps by becoming immersed in the construction sector.
Building Ireland touched base with Elton Knight recently to learn all about the ins and outs of the family-run company and its hopes going forward.
“The company’s established 50 years this year and we have nine staff at the moment,” he outlined.
“The services we provide would be house and commercial maintenance, flat roofing, main roofing, re-slatting jobs, extensions, renovations, new builds and patios.
“Anything to do with the construction side – you name it and we do it.”
It’s that approach which has seen Tony Knight & Sons Ltd grow from strength to strength over the decades.
When Tony Knight himself first started out in the construction industry it was a one-man operation and, as the years rolled past, his reputation grew off the back of excellent work and delivering projects of the highest quality.
Tony’s sons Elton (director) and Anthony (head foreman) now help their father in the day-to-day operating of the company and, right now, business is thriving with projects on-going in and around Cavan and Athlone, with another major one along the way in Co Galway.
“We’re just finishing off 11 houses there in Virginia and we’re at two big patios here in Athlone at the minute,” said Elton.
“We’ve started one job on two apartments in Athlone as well, so we’re kept busy at the moment on all of those.”
With a team of highly qualified builders, the projects continue to flow for Tony Knight & Sons Ltd in spite of all the challenges out there at the moment.
The Covid-19 pandemic, and the government lockdowns which followed in order to fight the spread of the virus, impacted businesses throughout Ireland.
Elton explained that while Tony Knight & Sons Ltd was shutdown for a period during the first lockdown, the business more or less hasn’t looked back since re-opening the operation in May 2020.
“The very first lockdown we were off there for a couple of weeks and then, once we got going again, we haven’t stopped since,” he stated.
“We were at social housing there in Cavan last year, so we were kept going with them, and Covid hardly even affected us to tell you the truth.”
The Rampart View project in Virginia, Co Cavan is situated about five miles from the Meath border and is presently towards the end of its second phase.
Having completed 10 houses to the client PSPC Developments’ satisfaction three years ago, Tony Knight & Sons Ltd is now nearing the finishing stages of the other 11 houses which will see the project complete.
Elsewhere, there are more projects in the pipeline for the company as Elton himself explained:
“The same as everything now, pricing is the main thing at this stage but we have a nice big job coming up now which is for housing Ukrainians in.
“It’s a big house in Ballinasloe, Co Galway and it’s the next big one for us. We’ve it priced up and are just waiting to get the go ahead on it.”
So, all of that considered, the burning question is what has been the secret to the growth and continued success of Tony Knight & Sons Ltd down through the decades?
How has a small construction start-up grown into a thriving business with a golden reputation for its work around the Athlone area?
For Elton, he points to the work his father has done over the last 50 years to being the reason behind the longevity and success of the business.
“We’re a local family-run business here and Athlone isn’t a big town,” he stated. “Tony is well-known and he used to be well in with the soccer club in Athlone Town as well, so he’s worked with so many over the years and is known for the quality of work he does.
“A lot of the work has come through word of mouth and I suppose it’s a testament to the work my father has done down through the years.”
Looking towards the coming months for the company, Elton himself is very much optimistic and hopes, like everyone, to see material costs coming down sooner rather than later.
“If things keep going the way they’re going we’re alright. We’ve enough on to keep us going through this year and maybe into next year as well.
“The main thing now is the cost of materials because something has to give there. Hopefully, they do something with it, maybe a tax break on it, and it can level off a bit because something has to give with it,” he concluded.
Tony Knight & Sons Ltd
1 Glenavon Terrace,
Mobile 087 243 7406
This article was published in Building Ireland Magazine, September 2022, Vol 8 No 9