Specialising in both structural steel fabrication and plant hire, Waterford-headquartered Dalton Structural Steel have been providing farmers in Munster and Leinster with unrivalled farm building and groundworks solutions for two decades and counting. We contacted founder and proprietor Gerry Dalton to find out more about the complete range of outstanding services delivered to the agri community.
From bespoke, modern farm buildings to plant hire / groundworks, Dalton Structural Steel offers farmers a full range of high-quality, value-added solutions, with a complete service provided in-house by their experienced, professional personnel and fresh fleet of modern machinery. Located in Clonea-Power, close to Carrick-on-Suir, at the heart of dairy country, Dalton Structural Steel covers Waterford, Kilkenny, Cork, Tipperary and Wexford. One of the real strengths of the company is that – as both structural steel and groundworks specialists – they can offer farmers the best of both worlds, with the capacity to tackle any farm building project in-house from start to finish:
“That’s true,” confirms Gerry. “We can do the whole job from the ground up to the top of the new farm building. We can clear the site and put up the new steel frame and clad it – providing the whole finished product. It’s convenient for farmers as it means they just have to deal with one man and one invoice. Also, there are no unnecessary delays or complications and, with one point of contact, everything works out very well.
“Of course, some farmers will just ask us to go in and do the frame and that doesn’t bother us at all. We are flexible and are more than happy to provide whatever service the farmer wants – be it a complete job or part of the job.”
A high-quality finish is guaranteed every time with Dalton Structural Steel, who invariably leave an excellent product behind them, resulting in a steady volume of repeat business from satisfied customers and positive referrals through word of mouth.
When it comes to farm buildings, Dalton Structural Steel excel. Their highly-skilled team of professionals work with the client from conception to completion to ensure that the final result meets their exact specification and requirements. Dalton Structural Steel are members of the Irish Association of Steel Fabricators and all their steel is CE-marked.
In addition to farm work, their structural steel division also covers industrial buildings and domestic houses, while their plant hire / groundworks services similarly meet all agri-related and general construction requirements, including – but by no means limited to – digger hire, tractor and dump trailer hire, teleporter hire, rock breaking, site clearance, land reclamation and drainage. All in all, these are extremely busy times at Dalton Structural Steel: “We’re very busy at the moment,” says Gerry. “There’s a lot of farm work being done and there’s also a lot of steel going into houses, with more people opting for open-plan living. About 70% of our structural steel work is for farm buildings.
“We’re certified up to Execution Class One for farm buildings and Class Two for structural steel houses and industrial buildings. This CE certification is legally required now and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Anybody providing structural steelwork must be certified, competent and able to prove that they can do quality work.
“While it can be time-consuming and there is another layer of cost involved in securing and maintaining this certification, it results in better workmanship, higher-quality buildings and ultimately better results for the client. You can walk away confidently from every job knowing that everything is right and finished to the highest possible standards.”
In Gerry’s opinion, what is the key to consistently delivering exceptional farm building solutions? “A good finish is vital,” the Waterford man points out. “Put in proper steel, do it professionally and don’t cut corners. Try your best to make sure every project is 100% when you walk away from it. We get very few callbacks and that is reassuring.
“We finish the work right, with the screw lines straight and everything well capped off and when you make sure the finish is as good as it can be, that way you will get repeat work. Once you do good work, take your time and focus on quality workmanship, using the best materials, then you are increasing your chances of getting repeat work or work through word of mouth, which is what keeps the business going.”
All structural steel and sheeting is manufactured in-house in Dalton Structural Steel’s own state-of-the-art workshop, where six are employed full time, while the erecting work is completed by tried-and-trusted subcontractors with whom Gerry enjoys excellent long-term working relationships. All the agricultural sheeting is supplied by Euronit Ireland formerly Tegral.
Covering Waterford and parts of Cork, Tipperary, South Kilkenny and into New Ross in Wexford, Dalton Structural Steel boast an excellent track record for providing high-quality milking parlours as well as storage sheds and animal housing units. ¶
“We’re in the heart of dairy – you won’t see a corn field around here, it’s just cows,” Gerry continues. “Dairy is good at the minute. Costs are obviously up but the dairy man is still getting a good price for his milk. If the farmer is making money, he will spend it. They are the ones who really keep the economy moving.”
Hailing from a dairy background himself, Gerry Dalton has an innate understanding of the level of service a farmer expects: “I grew up on the family dairy farm, which is today ran by my brother John,” he concludes. “I got into the structural steel work and it just snowballed. I started doing small repair jobs for local farmers and then barriers, then sheds, then structural steel fabrication. “It took a lot of time and hard work to build the business up but we’re busy now and well established. My late father Dick would have been a big influence. He had us working from a young age and, even though we probably didn’tdidin’t understand the value of it at the time, that has paid off for us in later years.”
Dalton Structural Steel,
Tel: 086 8765907
Email: [email protected]
First published in Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 11 No 1, January/February 2023