CABINET maker Paul Rathkey has been awarded the prestigious contract to make the meeting table for world leaders at the 2014 Nato Summit in Newport.
His team at Llandow-based Rathkeys will make two tables for the event made from four tonnes of wood. A 25 metre long table will be used for the main meeting room with a second table, which is 17 metres in diameter, in a second meeting room which will be used by leaders when they meet in smaller numbers. Both tables are being made from a range of woods sourced from around Wales.
Rathkeys is not the only business to benefit from the contract; the table legs are made in Bridgend; the Welsh Oak is supplied by a timber company in Swansea; the laminated wood is from Cardiff; a Bridgend company has supplied the cable trunking; and to move the giant table to the Celtic Manor, a Bridgend removal company will be on hand.
With two weeks to go until completion date Mr Rathkey said: “It’s an honour to be asked to make this table for the Summit. It’s one of the biggest projects we’ve taken on, but we like a challenge. We’ve made sure that all elements of the table are Welsh, from the wood to the delivery trucks. My six man team will be working around the clock to get this ready on time.”
Wales Office Minister Alun Cairns said: "Seeing the Nato table being crafted by Paul here in Wales using Welsh oak - even the legs are being made here in Bridgend - brings home to us that the Summit is great for our nation not only in terms of profile but also in practical terms. Welsh businesses - local tradespeople, hotels, food suppliers and energy providers - are benefiting from the Nato effect at the same time as Wales is being recognised across the globe as a venue that can host world-class events."
The Nato Summit is being held at the Celtic Manor in Newport on 4-5 September and will host more than 60 world leaders.