Welcome for hi-tech car factory proposal

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PLANS to open a high-tech automotive manufacturing plant in Rotherham were welcomed by council bosses yesterday, despite the fact that the firm behind the new scheme announcing redundancies a fortnight ago.

Tata Steel announced 126 job losses at the end of last month but this Monday it revealed plans to go into business with “industry partners” Productiv Ltd to develop a new “automotive proving facility”, in the town.

Rotherham Council’s leader Roger Stone said he welcomed Tata’s new ideas, adding that they fitted with other “advanced manufacturing” facilities which had already opened in the borough.

He said: “It is good to see that another industry-leading research centre will be located in Rotherham along with the world-class facilities we already have at the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP).

“That is demonstrating expertise in industries such as aerospace and power generation, the addition of this automotive proving facility further strengthens our claim to be the centre of the UK’s advanced manufacturing heartland.”

James Newman, chairman of the Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “I would like to congratulate the Productiv-led team on securing funding from the Government’s Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative.

“The new proving factory will join our growing community of advanced manufacturing researchers in the Sheffield City Region and will help to boost further growth in the industry.

“As the Sheffield City Region continues to strengthen its reputation as a global centre for modern manufacturing and technology, I hope to see more City Region initiatives of this ambition gain Government support in the future.”