6 reasons to choose Helmsman Lockers

6 Reasons to choose Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles

6 Reasons to choose Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles

Helmsman Lockers & Cubicles is a family run business

With a strong commitment and an extensive history in the industry, Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles has all the benefits of a family-run business, whilst still being one of the UK’s top manufacturers and installers. The company has been built on strong family values and good relationships, with a team of long-serving employees, suppliers we have worked with for years and repeat customers returning with new projects. We believe in the power of teamwork, harnessing and playing to each member’s strengths resulting in a business whose value and effectiveness is greater than the sum of its parts.


We’re the whole package

Not only do Helmsman supply a huge range of products, including lockers, cubicles, bench seating, IPS and vanity units, we also are the UK’s only turnkey manufacturer. With our fantastic team, we can support you from design, manufacture and installation all the way through to our after-sales support. We really do offer the complete package for your project.


Bespoke Lockers and Cubicles projects

Because we are the only company in the UK to offer the full package, Helmsman offers not only off-the-shelf products but can also create bespoke solutions for your project. Whether this be aluminum, steel, glass or solid grade laminate. We offer a range of colours and styles, as well as options and accessories such as heated lockers, charging lockers, and different locking systems, plus we can provide solutions for awkward corners, uneven floors or even curved walls.


Helmsman lockers come with a warranty – but they’ve been known to last over 50 years!

Our products come with a warranty, and a lifetime of support and after-sales service, (more on that later!) However, we were once contacted by a lovely lady from Shropshire about some replacement keys for her lockers. As standard practice we requested some photos of the item to identify the lock and received a selection of photos of lockers from 50 years ago, even with the old Helmsman logo still intact. With a product lasting that long, this is another great reason to choose Helmsman for your project.

Helmsman original logo


After Sales Service

From minor repairs to complete refurbishment, Helmsman can provide you with the necessary service, maintenance and after-service facilities. We offer a complete range of after-sales care and service, ranging from a regular maintenance contract to ad hoc repairs. We also stock a comprehensive range of replacement parts available for immediate delivery, maximizing the life of our products.


Experience and knowledge of lockers and cubicles with a history spanning 230 years

The Helmsman brand and company originates from Bristol Docks around 1790 when it was a manufacturer of wooden parts for ships. By 1875 it was located in the West India Dock in London making galvanized iron tanks and cisterns for bulk liquid storage. The factory later relocated to Walthamstow, and then suffered a direct hit from a V2 rocket in 1944, killing the chairman and several employees. In the 1960s the company was manufacturing bulk tanker lorry bodies for transporting items such as grain or flour.

During the early 1970s the company moved to its current home in Bury St Edmunds, manufacturing lockers for the school, industry and leisure markets. Over 40 years later, Helmsman are the UK’s leading manufacturers and installers of a complete range of lockers and cubicles, with the original wooden sailor figure standing in our entrance.

Helmsman history

Need any more convincing? Contact us today or fill in our quote form here.

Multipurpose metal lockers

What’s the best locker for multipurpose use?

Multipurpose metal lockers

The locker industry has come a long way, but it all began in ancient Greece approximately 2500 years ago. Back in those days, changing room and the locker room was an essential part of competition and training centres for athletes. Even then lockers had a multipurpose and multi-user functionality. We all know that a locker is a unit, usually with narrow storage compartments available in changing rooms, locker rooms or dressing rooms. Some facilities may have a locker room attendant who can look after your belongings until you come back to take them. Since the conceptualisation of lockers, they have always been used to store valuable personal items.

Today’s lockers can be found in many different locations, not just changing rooms or specific locker rooms. They can also be in shopping malls, hospitals, and offices. Lockers can have many purposes, storage still being the main function but with additional purposes of charging sockets for smart devices, drying clothing, and distributing items such as uniforms.

Helmsman has been manufacturing lockers for over 40 years. We define ourselves as are bespoke manufacture of lockers and cubicles. Even the standard metal lockers can be modified to specific and bespoke sizes to fit any environment and project.

Multipurpose Metal Lockers

Our Essential Metal Lockers are the lockers that can do the job in any environment or location. These multipurpose lockers are suitable for schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, and workplaces. We offer a safe and secure storage solution for personal possessions, tools, books, gym bags and other valuables.

Helmsman essential range can use different locking systems for multipurpose use. For example, the KL1000 locking system is one of the most innovative ideas to surface in access control for a while. This allows the lock to operate with a single-use code. The guest enters a personal four-digit code twice to confirm the correct entry. Anyone could use these lockers, staff, or customers.

For more information about our Essential Metal Lockers range contact us today.

Laminate Heated Two Compartment Lockers

Heated Lockers are ready – choose to cycle to work

Laminate Heated Two Compartment Lockers

British weather is always unpredictable, but cycling to work has never been easier. Many employers offer ‘green’ travel plans and other incentives to cycle to work; it is healthy and protects the environment. However, one of the most important things is having suitable facilities. Instead of having wet clothing or towels in the office, employees can now dry them quickly and easily. We have heated lockers ready, so choose to cycle to work!

Offering the whole package, Helmsman can supply your workplace with shower cubicles, changing room cubicles and heated lockers to dry your damp cycling clothes and wet towels. Helmsman provides heated lockers to many different environments, banks, offices, universities, colleges, ferry terminals, energy companies, oil rigs, ships, farms, tree surgeons, forestry commission, hospitals and much more. Heated lockers are much more than just a drying solution. Helmsman lockers are secure, durable and aesthetically-pleasing, creating a pleasant environment.


Helmsman heated lockers utilise an energy-efficient tube heater as their source of heat. The tube heaters are rated at 60w per 300mm long heater and can be combined with timers and controllers to maximise efficiency. If you need a faster drying time, we can double up the tube heaters to provide more power. All heated lockers are on skirted stands with a single flex for connecting to the mains supply. The minimum number of lockers on a skirted locker stand is two, and the maximum is six. The lockers can be a single or up to two compartments per locker. Our standard locker size is 1775mm high x 300mm wide x 450mm deep. However, we offer bespoke options. Get in touch to view our metal and laminate colour ranges.

Locking Options

We provide the lockers with either a key lock or a swivel hasp lock to take a padlock as standard. Other locking options include coin return or collect locks, mechanical combination, electronic combination locks or RFID as a selection.

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Helmsman 50 year old lockers

50 years on and still going strong!

Helmsman Originals

Sometimes you just get blindsided by customers and in a good way. You just have to take a step back and say wow. We were recently contacted by a nice lady in Shropshire asking about getting replacement keys for a couple of lockers.

Standard practice on this type of enquiry is getting a few photos so we can identify the type of locking system used. Imagine our surprise – and delight – in opening up the pictures revealing these little beauties still going strong 50 years later.

Everything from the old logo to the fabrication to the patina tells a remarkable story. Intrigued, we went back to the customer and asked more. She bought them from a seller in Powys and we believe they’ve had three owners over the years. The previous owner stored them in a potting shed and had in turn purchased them from a farmer for storing his gun cleaning kits.

The recent addition of some castors has turned them into little storage stools for a warehouse and we think they’re set for another 50 years!

If you have great pictures and a story to share about your Helmsman lockers, feel free to email us at hello@helmsman.co.uk

Z type lockers

Z Lockers

Helmsman Z locker has a unique shape to adapt to small spaces and because of its design, the two compartments can store more items than expected for multiple users. Here at Helmsman our Z lockers are available in a range of sizes, colours and locking systems. High-quality double coat hooks and a coat rail are fitted in the locker. Z Lockers can give your space storage with style. All of our lockers are manufactured in Suffolk, UK.

Check out our specifications below:

Helmsman Z lockers specifications

We are able to manufacture bespoke Z Lockers to your personal specifications. Just let us know what you would like by calling us on 01284 727626 or getting in touch by email sales@helmsman.co.uk

Installation of metal lockers

How To Install Metal Lockers The Right Way

Installing lockers may be easy for Helmsman professionals, but can be a tricky job for anyone doing it for the first time. This is why we want to provide you with the essential tips on how to install metal lockers safely.

There are some things that you should consider before starting the installation. Firstly the size of the room, ceiling height, fixtures, fittings and location, as this will affect the positioning and layout of your lockers. Measurements of the area need to be specific and you have to allow approximately 4mm extra at the sides of each locker. Allow corridor widths of approximately 1000mm minimum especially in schools and consider the space for when opening doors.

You also need to consider the position of any windows or doors. Make sure your lockers will not block access to any windows or doors which still need to be opened. Take note of things like skirting boards, radiators, heating pipes, light switches, and sockets etc.

Make sure you install on a strong, level and even surface, are the floors level? If there is a slope to the floor, you will need to position them on locker stands with adjustable feet, stands can be ordered alongside your lockers. Check the suitability of the wall before fitting, is the area suitable to be drilled into? If that is a ‘yes’ you are ready to go.

Let’s install your lockers

For your locker installation, you will need a spirit level, spanner, drill and handling equipment. Fixings, nesting nuts and bolts will be provided. Ideally, two people are required to do an installation especially if the lockers are front heavy such as glass or laminate lockers. Suitable PPE may be required for safety reasons. When and if offloading the lockers, do it front faced as they are heavy and could tip over and get damaged.

Most lockers are tall and thin, depending on your requirements and specifications but they could be unstable if they are not fixed to the wall or each other. A single run of lockers must be secured to a suitable anchor point with a suitable bracing mechanism. Lockers on stands or seat/stands should be fixed down to the stand or seat/stand as well as side to side and back to a wall or run of lockers. It is really important that lockers placed back to back are bolted together securely because the lockers industry has had fatalities in the past.

Upkeep of your lockers

Cleaning lockers is easy; simply use a duster or soft cloth. It is recommended that all locks and hinges are regularly maintained with a suitable lubricant. If any doors or locks become damaged, we recommend replacing these as soon as possible so security is not compromised. Helmsman offer replacement doors and parts.

Please note this only applies to metal and heavy-duty lockers. For further guidance or to find out more please call us on 01284 727626 or email hello@helmsman.co.uk


Design features to consider for Police Lockers

What Design Features Should be Considered for Police Lockers?

Choosing the best design features for police lockers needs careful consideration. As police lockers are a taxpayer investment and used frequently, there are many points to consider.

Firstly, it’s a good idea to estimate the items that each police officer will store. All police equipment stored in lockers can be measured for approximate dimensions. A locker room provides a place to prepare officers for their next shift. It’s also a place to switch off at the end of a busy one. Spaces that are well planned and organised reduce stress and promote peace of mind. An organised layout with considered design features for police lockers will store all weapons, uniforms and other gear.


The most common items that need to be stored by our police force are:

  • Uniform on hangers
  • Hat/helmet
  • Duty belt
  • Shoes
  • Workout gear
  • Towel
  • Toiletries
  • Personal gadgets
  • Chargers

This is a good starting point to determine the design features needed for police officers’ lockers. Some police officers might also need to store:

  • A radio
  • CS gas canisters
  • Body camera
  • A baton
  • Flashlights
  • Gloves
  • Firearms and ammunition
  • Taser and other weapons

The following points are key design features to consider for Police Lockers:

A Charging Station in Police Lockers

  • Charging stations inside police lockers are important to keep devices in charge. Having charging lockers means gadgets can be charged during off-hours and ready for use on a working day.

Police Lockers with Drawers

  • Drawers provide a separate compartment and are great for storing heavier bulkier items such as boots. They can be the same depth as the locker.  Drawers can also be made deeper and fitted with a bench on top to serve as a seat and provide additional storage.

Police Lockers with Benches

  • If your locker room has space, providing a bench seat for uniform lockers is a good investment. Police lockers with benches are fitted as a separate unit below the locker.  The more space available the deeper the drawer base and seat can be. Providing a bench as a seat will make changing footwear etc a more comfortable experience.  These design features for police lockers should be considered according to the needs of each officer.

A separate internal Locking Compartment

  • A separate compartment provides an extra layer of security for cash and other personal valuables. It has its own locking compartment inside the locker. These internal compartments look almost like lockable cubes and can be secured with either a cam lock or padlock.

Consider “Ventilation” as a design feature in Police Lockers

  • Many lockers are ventilated with louvres on the locker doors. Louvres on locker doors allow fresh air to circulate. If ventilation is a top priority you should consider installing ducts. Ducts are an air extraction system that is concealed under the lockers’ sloped tops. These ducts draw air out through the lockers and outside the building.
  • Frequently, drawer bases are ventilated to allow the drying of wet boots and gear. Small diamond sections are punched through the metal in various sizes and quantities.

A Drying Rack or a Heated locker incorporated into the design?

  • A drying rack allows wet gear to be placed on a hanger and left to dry out naturally. These can be either mesh sections of locker shaped racks or static hanging rail sections.
  • A bespoke heated locker system on the other hand will dry the garments in a locked heated environment. This means wet clothing stored in metal lockers will be dry and ready for the next shift. Heated lockers have a tube heater inserted below in a skirted locker stand. A perforated locker base allows warm air to circulate up through the inside of the locker.
  • Officers’ lives depend on their body armour vests so they need care and attention.  At best, they should be laid out to completely dry between shifts.

“Shared Facilities” are a worthwhile design consideration 

  • Shared locker facilities maximise locker usage. It not only divides cost but is helpful to our environment also. Designing lockers with these locker features will help you make the most of your investment.

Durable Lockers are a key feature

  • Uniform lockers for emergency services need to be tough, secure and built to last.  When built from a heavy-duty construction, these large volume lockers will suit almost any sort of police attire.
  • Storing kit, body armour, clothing and personal effects needs sturdy lockers to withstand years of daily use. For added stability in security locker rooms, the lockers can be secured back to back or wall-mounted.

Customise lockers for your police officers’ needs

  • Customise your police officer personal storage lockers by choosing from a variety of options. These include police lockers with separate locking compartments, charging facilities, drawers, a bench, and much more.
  • Uniform lockers can come with flat tops or sloped tops.  Sloped tops prevent items from being stored on top of lockers and keep the locker room tidy.
  • Locking options include cam locks supplied with 2 keys as standard as well as the hasp and staple lock. You will incur additional costs for combination and coin return/retain locks.

Which company is armed with the knowledge to incorporate these features into police lockers?

  • With full control over the process from beginning to end, Helmsman can offer you a fully customised police locker.
  • Recently, our prime minister Boris Johnson stated a forthcoming shortfall of lockers for 20,000 police officers. Police officers will need lockers to keep their kits safely stored away.  His department outlined equipment must be stored somewhere overnight and finding locker space would be the key.
  • We are confident we can meet these demands and incorporate these design features into your police lockers. It’s important to get professional advice on optimising your storage solution. Our team of professionals can provide you with information on our range of police locker options. Contact us or outline your requirements in our quotation form.
school lockers

15% OFF all school locker orders received by 31st July 2019

There’s no better time to purchase your school lockers than right now. We’re offering 15% off all school locker orders received by 31st July 2019. This will allow us to have your order delivered for the start of the new term in September 2019.

We have a range of lockers for schools from metal lockers, laminate lockers, gym lockers, charging lockers and cube lockers. These are all designed to suit the needs of teachers and pupils. Using our 15% off all school locker orders will be of great significance especially with tight school budgets. Please feel free to view all our lockers, fill out your details “get a quote” to help us deal with your request.

15% off school lockers

replacing school lockers

Are you thinking about replacing School Lockers?

When replacing school lockers many factors need to be considered. This area needs careful consideration as this is a long-term investment in your schools future. Here are some of the variables you could consider:

They have become too old

  • If you’re thinking about replacing school lockers that are old and grubby, you may very well consider going for a complete new locker solution. Old lockers will cause more trouble over time e.g. creaking doors, replacement locks and keys. Locker graffiti dates the overall appearance of the school locker.
  • If the maintenance is becoming too costly, now might be the time to reinvest in a locker system that keeps costs down. Not only will it save you from costly maintenance but would also prove to be a better investment in the long run. However, at your discretion, some lockers may still be good enough with a new door or lock being replaced.

They’re past the stage of replacing parts

  • Many manufacturers offer replacements for locker parts. These include parts such as hinges, locks, doors etc. The services are brilliant allowing schools and students to get along with their day to day operations. However, when a school locker has a major amount of wear and tear and has undergone repairs many times the need to replace the locker intensifies.

Several areas have rust

  • Rust on painted or protected steel surfaces will spread! Not only is this unpleasant to look at, but it can also be harmful to open skin such as cuts. Also, rusted metal expands and breaks the protective coating which allows more rust to form. This calls for the removal of the rusted lockers immediately to stop the spread. Consideration should be given to the replacement lockers especially if they are exposed to wet gear.
  • An aluminium type locker is more suited to such an area.

Visible damages have become an eyesore

  • Lockers which have had their doors either kicked in or dinted are probably the main factor that will influence a decision on whether to replace or update. Fixing the dents is plausible on some occasions but the deeper the dint the more likely hood of a replacement door.
  • There are many types of doors available and if dents have been an issue in the past, you may want to consider replacing them. A laminate door can replace the metal door and is available in a range of colours and is much more durable.

Space optimisation is needed

  • Over the years’ course content has changed, the materials used have been upgraded and our students have adapted to new ways of learning. If your students are finding it difficult to store their belongings in the lockers, then it is time to upgrade the lockers.
    In some subject courses, the content is by way of whiteboard learning and all the information is electronic. However, there remains a need for printed copies for further learning in each subject area with large folders and heavy schoolbags. Previous studies have pointed to back problems resulting from students carrying heavy schoolbags on their backs. From a health and safety point of view, students should at least be given the choice to have a locker for the school year. This allows them to carry specific subject materials between classes where possible.
  • The number of locker compartments needed is an important point to consider i.e. in some cases the number of students in the school. The place where the lockers will be positioned needs consideration also. This could be along a corridor or to space already designated for lockers. The width and depth of your student lockers should be discussed in detail to ensure the space available meets their needs. Thereafter and space permitting, whether it’s two, three or four compartments this should give you an idea of the number of lockers to be purchased.

Upgrading to locker types suitable for schools today?

If the standard locker doesn’t target the specific needs of your students, then it’s time to upgrade. Since the growth of the internet, almost every student has a laptop or device with a charging facility. Most locker manufacturers have adapted to this growing trend and incorporated a range of lockers to meet these demands. Charging lockers suitable for laptops, phones and other devices offer security, meets their needs and is space optimising.

There are so many options that can take care of your specific needs. A cube locker for example is a clever modular storage system and is designed to go almost anywhere. These may be the answer for storing small valuable items and can be supplied with a charging facility also. You need to consider investing in a locker type that suits the world of a trending student of today. The market has a variety of options available that also helps in bringing about a vibrant look to the school surroundings.

What to do with the old school locker?

When you have reinvested in new school lockers you have to consider what to do with the old ones. Firstly, in keeping our environment safe repair lockers where possible.
Instead, you could donate them to a local charity and relieve yourself from any hassle. Consider contacting your nearest metal junk dealer as they may take away the lockers free of charge. You could make use of a reliable auction website or offer to an online reuse network if the school lockers are still in good condition.

If they are in good condition, they could be taken to any Recycling Centre and placed in the re-use container. Alternatively, your local borough or district council offers a charged bulky waste collection service.

What to do now?

With education budgets under pressure, it’s important to get professional advice on optimising your storage solution. We can help you by either providing an entirely new locker system or by reusing some of your existing lockers with additional brand new lockers where required. For more information contact us here or fill out the quotation form by clicking the button below.

metal lockers