Crest Building Products Managing Director Arnold van Huet is retiring after over 50 years in the brick and roofing tile industry.

8 Dec 2023

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Arnold van Huet started Crest Brick Slate and Tile over 35 years ago and was one of the first businesses within the UK to import high-quality clay-facing bricks and roofing tiles from Europe.

In June 2023 Arnold announced to the team “With great difficulty, I have made my mind up to retire from the business and informed Alan Simpson CEO of Brickability of my decision. We have jointly built up a fantastic business after many years of hard work, but we can all be very proud of what we have achieved. I am of course sad to leave but at the same time, I can look back with pride and with the knowledge that I am leaving the Crest brick business to a very good and committed team under Stuart King's leadership”.

With his outstanding brick knowledge, along with his European manufacturing business partners, Arnold designed a range of bricks that are seen throughout the UK, Ireland, and European nations today.

As the business progressed Arnold, working in conjunction with Germany's roofing tile specialists Nelskamp introduced a range of roof tiles to add to Crest’s range of building products.  

Now offering both bricks and roof tiles. Arnold moved the business to Howden, East Yorkshire, with a larger office, showroom and yard space. Arnold could expand the business and further grow his target market into Builders Merchants, House Builders, Self-Build and Architects.  

Arnold also played a major role in the BMF and UFEMAT, the European Association of National Builders. He developed strong working relationships with our European manufacturing partners, built over many years through mutual respect.

Today, due to Arnold’s drive, innovation and passion Crest currently employs 20 staff and has grown into one of the UK’s leading suppliers of building products and has one of the most extensive portfolios from which customers can choose from their superb range of bricks, clay and concrete roofing tiles and PV integrated solar roofing systems.  

As part of the company’s succession planning Stuart King becomes Managing Director and says: “On behalf of everyone at Crest I would just like to say thank you to Arnold, I was given the toughest job in the industry, taking over from the man that people think invented bricks! but truth be told it was so well set up, I just needed to carry it on as it was and that is all I have tried to do”. Stuart King and the Crest team would like to wish Arnold the long and happy retirement that he deserves.  

Alan Simpson CEO of the Brickability Group comments “Crest became part of the group in 2018 and Arnold brought a wealth of expertise in the import and export market to the group. During his long career within the brick and roofing tile industry, Arnold was involved in developing many brick and roofing products that are among our best sellers today. Arnold has played a pivotal role in helping with the acquisitions in the group which has helped shape the group into what it is today, and I would like to thank Arnold for his help in achieving this. The industry will be a quiet place without Arnold around every day his enthusiasm was contagious”. Alan sent his best wishes to Arnold for a happy retirement.

John Richards chairman of the Brickability group joined Alan in thanking Arnold for what has been a remarkable contribution to the industry. He says: “Whether his early career in the Netherlands brick industry, the formation and then huge progress of the Crest Group or indeed his contribution to the Brickability Group both pre- and post-IPO, all have been marked by significant success. That doesn’t happen by accident but rather results from focus, persistence, vision, and pure doggedness and all of these have been trademarks of Arnold’s career. I would also like to thank Arnold for the personal welcome afforded me when I joined the group almost 6 years ago. He has been a colleague whose advice has always been worth listening to".


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Arnold (pictured far left) with delegates at the 62nd UFEMAT Conference in London in 2022. At the evening gala dinner, Dalichuk and his fellow Ukrainian delegate Irina Salli of the Ukraine Union, Manufacturers & Merchants, were presented with £45,500, the result of fundraising by the BMF, for the Disasters Emergency Committee’s work in Ukraine.