Our People

It’s our people that set us apart. We recruit, retain and develop people with the knowledge, skills and attitude to deliver consistent service, and only work with supply chain partners who share our high standards.

We employ around 500 people across a range of management, engineering and trade disciplines and our average staff retention rate is an impressive 16.5 years. Our extensive training and development programme ensures we have apprentices in training at all times.

One of the secrets to our success is blending the knowledge and experience of our long-serving members of staff with the enthusiasm for emerging technologies and new ideas of the younger members of our teams.

We work in a diverse range of sectors,
from airports to pharmaceuticals.

Our Clients

Our clients come from a diverse range of sectors including airports, data centres, banking, education, leisure, pharmaceuticals, retail and logistics – but they all have one thing in common: they demand quality and value from their service providers.

We’re proud to be rated by our clients as a reliable, collaborative, fair and proactive organisation that consistently delivers a high-quality service. Our clients also say they enjoy working with our teams.

70% of our turnover is from repeat business year-on-year: we retain our clients through gold-standard customer service, always pursuing improvement, policy compliance and effective response to change in the dynamic markets we work in.

Our History

From small beginnings as an electrical contractor business started by two brothers in the post-war years, Gratte Brothers has now become one of the leading Building Services Contractors in the UK, whilst proudly remaining a family-owned business.

swipescroll to explore the timeline

Gratte Brothers First Registered

Gratte Brothers Limited was first registered on 22nd May 1946 by brothers Derrick and André Gratte as an electrical contracting business based in Knebworth, Hertfordshire. Gratte Brothers was started with a capital of £100, a sum equivalent to 20 weeks’ wages for a skilled tradesperson at the time.

Shortly after, Derrick Gratte left Knebworth to establish a London branch of the company in Red Lion Square, Holborn and in 1948 expanded into commercial catering equipment maintenance, working for Hertfordshire County Council.


Business Expands

It didn’t take long for our London branch to outgrow the Knebworth operation by acquiring major blue chip clients in the retail and expanding aviation sectors. A number of employees were recruited in this decade who would be promoted to senior roles within the business and remain with Grattes for the rest of their working lives.

Meanwhile, a refrigeration department was set up to support the catering equipment contracts being undertaken by the Knebworth branch.


The Second Generation

Martin and Ian Gratte, Derrick’s sons, joined the London Headquarters (by now located in Wicklow Street WC1, having outgrown its original premises) as the 1960s housebuilding boom provided residential work opportunities for the company, and turnover reached £1,000,000 for the first time.

Back in Knebworth, Gratte Brothers expanded its services to include design and installation works for catering equipment (to complement the maintenance service already offered) and a dedicated commercial catering equipment division was established.


New Ideas

Martin and Ian Gratte were appointed to the Board, bringing new ideas as international work continued to grow.

By the late 1970s, Design and Build contracts were commonplace for both M&E and Electrical only work so Gratte Brothers established a separate M&E design division, and we added a mechanical building services capability to our portfolio of services.


Largest M&E Contract to Date

We won the largest M&E contract to date (£250,000 to provide building services to the Chinese Embassy in London) in the 1980s.

Ian Bass, Derrick’s son-in-law, was appointed Financial Director as turnover exceeded £13m. Gratte Brothers was flourishing in international and retail M&E works and the evolving commercial catering business was contributing significantly to the turnover.


Relocating to Regents Wharf

Having outgrown Wicklow Street, we relocated to Regents Wharf, N1 (where our London HQ is still based) and we completed our first data centre project.

We also registered a separate commercial catering equipment company, known today as Gratte Brothers Catering Equipment Limited and an electronic security management company, Gratte Brothers Security Management, as subsidiaries of the Gratte Brothers Group.


Over 100 New Staff Join

The 2000s saw Gratte Brothers acquire a mechanical services company, welcoming over 100 new members of staff to our business. This decade also saw the establishment of an M&E Maintenance division, now known as Gratte Brothers Building Services Maintenance Ltd.

By this stage, Stephen Gratte (Martin’s son) and David Gratte (Ian’s son) had also joined the business, establishing Gratte Brothers’ third generation of expertise.


The Third Generation

In the early 2010s, Gratte Brothers Security Management Limited flourished and today remains located amongst three offices; our London HQ and our Belfast and Warrington offices.

The M&E division of the business also secured a number of high-profile framework contracts in this period, and by this time, had developed its own Principal Contractor capability.

In 2016, we celebrated our 70th Anniversary. Stephen and David were joined by Chris Bass, a third Grandson of Derrick, and all three were appointed to the Group Board.


£250+ Million Turnover

As of 2022, David Gratte, Steve Gratte and Chris Bass took on operational roles at Group level to become Group Managing Director (David), Group Risk Director (Steve), and Group Sales Director (Chris). This development makes them the third generation of the Gratte family to take control of the business.

2023 saw the Group undergo a significant update to its brand identity. Retaining the charm and familiarity of the original brand, a few tweaks were made to reflect the brand we are so proud of today.

As a Group, this decade also marks the milestone achievement of surpassing £250million in turnover: a testament to the incredible dedication of our teams.

Quick Facts

Parent Company:

Gratte Brothers Group Limited
Company Registered Number 2732546

Registered Address:

2 Regent’s Wharf,
All Saints Street,
N1 9RL

Operating Companies:

Gratte Brothers Limited
Registered Number 411138
Mechanical and electrical building engineering services.

Gratte Brothers Building Services Maintenance Limited
Registered Number 2729551
Building Services Maintenance

Gratte Brothers Catering Equipment Limited
Registered Number 1832773
Design, supply, installation and maintenance of
commercial catering facilities.

Gratte Brothers Security Management Limited
Registered Number 350139
Design, installation and maintenance of security systems and software.

Gratte Brothers Technical Services Limited
Registered Number 666254
Mechanical and electrical building engineering services.

Trade Associations, Assessment & Industry Organisations:

APPSS – Association of Police and Public Security Suppliers
APHC – Association of Plumbing and Heating Contractors
BSRIA – Building Services Research and Information Association
BESA – Building Engineering Services Association
CEDA – Catering Equipment Distributors Association
JIB – Joint Industry Board
NSI – National Security Inspectorate
NICEIC – National Inspection Council for Electrical Installation Contracting
Achilles – Building Confidence
Achilles – UDVB
Gas Safe


Gratte Brothers is assessed to:

Quality Standard ISO 9001

Environmental Standard ISO 14001

Safety Management Standard ISO 45001

Find us:

2 Regent’s Wharf,
All Saints Street
N1 9RL

View map

Contact us:

Email us: info@gratte.com

Call us: 020 7837 6433

to top