Meet the Small UK Business Showing the Positive Side of the Pandemic

Meet the Small UK Business Showing the Positive Side of the Pandemic

While the global COVID-19 pandemic continues to deliver devastating blows to the UK economy, one small business is acting as a prime example of how modern day challenges can be transformed into new opportunities for growth. Once a one-stop-shop for all things related to 45-gallon drums, the team behind is proving that it is possible to emerge even stronger on the other side by unexpectedly taking over Britain’s BBQ scene, turning their inventory into four brand new, all-in-one upright barbecue drums which double as smokers.

Having experienced a 70% loss of trade during the initial UK lockdown, the formerly thriving provider of steel storage drums and drum furniture took the time to reassess the situation, focusing on the current needs of the general public to shape their new venture. Determining that ‘eating outside’ had replaced ‘eating out’ as the COVID-secure weekend activity of choice, the team has drawn on a passion for BBQ and the al fresco entertainment scene to develop a brand new 45-gallon ‘BBQ-in-a-Box’, containing everything that’s needed to whip up a delicious dinner, quickly and easily.

Nathan Pearson, Co-Owner of 45 Gallon Drums said, “Even before COVID-19, BBQs were a massive part of our lives; each Friday, we’d make the time to light a BBQ in the yard to feed the team. Myself and co-owner Dean were already actively involved in the local community, hosting monthly BBQs for local children in disadvantaged areas. Like many businesses in the UK, we’ve faced daunting new challenges this year, but our love for the outdoor cooking scene has provided us with a brand new opportunity to grow and develop in a way that we now see as a very natural progression of our business. It’s one that we may not have noticed without the pandemic.”

The 45-gallon drum BBQs act as an all-in-one solution for outdoor cooking, enabling everyone to enjoy a safe, secure, and fun dining experience without heading to a pub or restaurant. The design has been upgraded in line with customer feedback and seen three upgrades completed in just eight weeks, giving users two new ways to cook.

The BBQ-in-a-Box includes three cooking utensils (complete with an integrated tool holder), coal basket, an adjustable cooking grill, chimney starter, and all BBQ essentials. Boasting a 58cm cooking area and a milled thick gauge steel/carbon steel combo, the new BBQs have already been used, reviewed, and recommended by UK BBQ wizard Marcus Bawdon, who met the team at CountryWoodSmoke HQ. An upgrade kit turns the drum into a smoker while a Plancha plate allows communal cooking on a hot plate over log fires, ideal for smash burgers and getting creative with the family or friends.

“It’s a very real, and very frightening fact that COVID-19 could have spelt the end of the road for us, and we know that many other small businesses in the UK are facing the same sort of challenges right now,” says Co-Owner Dean Fox. “While there is certainly a great deal of uncertainty, we want to speak out and tell these organisations that it really is possible to come out of this stronger on the other side with the right growth strategy. This is all still new to us, but we’re excited for the future, especially as we’re currently in talks with a very well known craft brewery to create custom BBQs… watch this space!”

The innovative new growth plan implemented by is not only helping the business itself to navigate the murky waters of COVID-19, but also many other small UK organisations, too. Committed to playing a role in the resurgence of British manufacturing, the team is deeply dedicated to sourcing all products and undertaking all BBQ manufacturing efforts in Great Britain. The new BBQs are all laser cut and hand finished in Wrexham, North Wales, with coal sourced from The Great Welsh Charcoal Company.

The new BBQ-in-a-Box drums are available now for £399 in four different colours: The Big Red, Pretty Green, The Baby Gril (pink), and The Bubba (blue).

To find out more, visit