Portable Sanitation Association International

Association Insight Nov 10 2021

Issue link: http://psai.uberflip.com/i/1426970

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3 I PSAI Association Insight, November 10, 2021 good old telephone broke the silence in the office one day for Ed Crafton of PolyPortables in Dahlonega, Georgia. After many an international phone call, Keith duly boarded a plane at Heathrow and flew to Atlanta to be met by Ed and Mitzi Crafton. After a few days of being entertained by Ed and shown around the manufacturing facilities, the two gentlemen got down to the business angle of securing a deal to import Ed's products into the UK, the deal being concluded with a handshake, no money being involved at this initial first encounter. Can you believe that! The deal they reached was that after the first container of 40 toilets was sold, then Keith would reimburse PolyPortables for the entire cargo— and so a long- standing relationship was established between these two entrepreneurs. As such, the first PolyPortables toilets entered the market under the brand name of Site A Loo in late 1987. The History of the Portable Toilet Industry in the UK and Ireland (continued from page 1) It must be said that just prior to the introduction of PolyPortables into the UK under the brand name Site A Loo, at that time another three companies had just broken into the market: Owen Pugh in Cramlington, Northumberland, using Satellite Tufway units, managed at that time by Phil Pidgeon (now part of Nixon Hire); WC In Fields, managed by Gordon Brandon and Nigel Casserly, who had imported a small container of Where to Begin... Keith Furniss The gentleman who is regarded as the founder of the portable toilet industry here in the UK is Keith Furniss, a man with a huge personality and vision who sadly passed away on November 1, 2020, at age 91. He was on a business trip (one of many) to Germany in 1986, whereupon from his hotel bedroom window he saw a "box" on the side of the street outside and later a man who by all accounts arrived with a strange-looking vehicle, a long yellow- and-black hose pipe, and disappeared inside this strange-looking box. Those who knew Keith will associate the next move; he immediately went outside to confront the man to try and learn more about this fascinating scene taking place outside the hotel in an affluent part of the city. The rest is history! Involvement with PolyPortables in Dahlonega, Georgia On his return home to Bournemouth and to his business (Poole Rent Equip Limited, founded in 1957), Keith set about contacting the company whose name he had found on the front door frame of the toilet in Germany, namely PolyPortables, Inc. In those early days, prior to today's modern means of international communication, the Ed Crafton (continued on page 7)

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