This year marks a fantastic milestone for Abfad Limited; we celebrate 25 years of providing our services to industry and we’d like to thank all of our clients, many of which have been with us since our early years.

Abfad: The Early Years

Formed in 1996 by directors Alan Fada and Chris Haritou with the vision of providing high quality trade experienced Industrial Coating rope access personnel, which was eventually extended to provide other trade services for construction and maintenance. A high level of specialist coating knowledge existed within the business which led the company to develop the award winning Fuelvac® double skin tank lining system.

Chris commented, “The company started with five personnel, an old van and two bags of rope access equipment as a specialist abseiling coating company in 1996. Alan and I had many years of experience working in this industry offshore and onshore in the UK and Europe and Abfad quickly established synergy within Shipyards providing specialist coating skills whilst working at height without the need for scaffolding, platforms, cranes or cradles. We developed our first innovation of patented permanent magnets in 1998 to assist rope technicians to hold themselves in position during performance of mechanical activities such as shot blasting, sanding, grinding, cutting/fabricating, welding and applying protective coatings, these magnets are now sold globally.”

25 years ago Abfad started with an old van now we have a small fleet

Abfad started life with an old van and two bags of rope access gear, now we have a small fleet and a warehouse full of specialist equipment.

Tank Lining Specialists

In the early 2000’s Abfad was approached by several large oil and gas companies to provide long lasting solvent free coating protection for their underground storage tanks in the UK. From these services Fuelvac® was created.

Fuelvac® is Abfad’s innovative double skin lining system and uses non-toxic, environmentally friendly materials including solvent free coating for final protection of stored cargo.

Fuelvac® complies with the COMAH Regulations which are set up to lay down rules for the prevention of major accidents involving dangerous substances, and to seek to limit the consequences for human health and the environment of any accidents.

Fuelvac® we believe is the only solvent free lining system in the World to be certified to the European Standard BS EN 13160-7 and has been successfully operating in above and underground storage tank since 2007.

So successful was the development and advancement of Fuelvac® that in 2019 it won first place in the Advanced Manufacturing category at the North East innovation awards against some stiff competition in a packed category of innovative companies.

Directors Chris Haritou and Alan Fada celebrate European accreditation for Fuelvac®

Fuelvac® is one of the few double skin tank lining systems in the World to have achieved BS EN 13160-7 accreditation.

25 Years of Innovation and Overcoming Challenges

Over the years Abfad has been involved in some truly unique and massive projects, such as high-level coating and welding on the new Wembley Stadium construction, coating refurbishment of the first commercial offshore wind farm, high level coating of the historic HMS Warrior, major construction refurbishment of a working 24-hour paper mill with temperatures of over 50˚C, the first ever monitored double skin lining of a 12 meter high Hydrochloric Acid storage tank, and our double skin lining system has been installed in over 185 storage tanks to date.

It’s not always been a smooth ride to reach this 25-year milestone, we’ve been witness to many disruptions and had to overcome many challenges over the years, both on a global and national level. It’s testament to the robustness of the company and the high level of service we provide to our clients that we’ve managed to navigate these tricky times and come out the other side stronger than ever.

Safety First Mentality

From the start one of the key drivers for Abfad was the dedication to putting safety first, reducing the hazard and potential risk to people and the environment. Safety is at the heart of Abfad and in April 2020 our Health and Safety Director Chris achieved IOSH Chartered Membership status. This is a fantastic achievement and one of the highest professional standards in health and safety, helping us to better serve our clients and increase the competency of our teams.


Health and Safety Director Chris achieved IOSH Chartered Membership Status in early 2020

Working with a Chartered Safety and Health Practitioner means you’re dealing with someone who’s at the top of their profession.

The Future for Abfad

Projects and Health and Safety Director, Chris Haritou, said on the future of Abfad, “The possibilities are endless, we’re currently working with partners to develop new innovation for the protection and monitoring of storage tanks, the R&D that Abfad Ltd continue to provide will keep the company at the front of our competitors and provide clients with the needed solutions for industry that currently do not exist.  License of our systems to other technically minded companies is also on the cards for future expansion.  I am proud of what has been achieved and the fact that Abfad Ltd has survived one of the most turbulent periods of trading over the past 25 years from the financial collapse and banking crisis, Scottish and European Referendums, and Covid-19, all have seen thousands of companies going into administration, Abfad Ltd has not only survived but increased sales and expansion and continue to set our sight on technology achievement that others only dream about.”

“Abfad offer three main services, rope access trade services, emergency safety cover for other trades working in confined space or at height, and the protection of storage tanks with solvent free coating (this includes the Fuelvac® double skin liner with Class 1 vacuum leak detection). Solvent free coatings are applied using a heated plural component spray machine, Abfad are one of the few companies in the UK and globally to have mastered this technique, propelling it to the highest level of specialist applicators.”

As a company Abfad are always looking to innovate and strengthen the services and products we offer our clients and industry, the next 25 years are sure to be just as exciting.