If anyone tells you the UK has no future as a manufacturing economy, point them to Andover. In this sedate Hampshire town they will find Stannah Stairlifts, which leads the world in building stairlifts for the elderly and infirm. Stannah disproves many a myth about what it takes to succeed in a global market: that you need to be publicly owned (for access to capital), huge (for economies of scale), and run by whizzkid MBAs loaded with share options (to pick up on all the latest management theories).
Oh, yes, and that you can't compete with the Far East from a high-cost base like the UK.
Stannah is a home-grown story in the best possible way. The company was founded in the 1960s by the entrepreneurial family that still owns it.