MORE than 100 jobs will be created on Burnley’s former Michelin site as part of a £1 billion Government investment.
Burnley aerospace company Aircelle will benefit from the redevelopment of the site, which has lain empty for years, and will become a “Supplier Village” for Burnley’s biggest private sector employer.
The Government has selected the £1.4m. bid, announced by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg as part of its Regional Growth Fund.
The private sector led bid, submitted by Aircelle and developed in partnership with Burnley Council, will create a dedicated Aerospace Supply Chain Logistics Park next to the Aircelle plant in Burnley.
Aircelle’s managing director Alan Hood said: “This is fantastic news for Aircelle and for Burnley.
“We have shared a vision with the council for the former Michelin site for some time.
“We have a strong long-term order book but need to strengthen and consolidate our supply chain, giving us the certainty we and our customers need and enabling those supply chain companies to grow.”
It will help create a logistics hub and attract manufacturing supply chain businesses to the former Michelin Site, generate £7m. of private sector investment and create up to 150 jobs.
The thrust of the bid is to increase efficiency and capacity within the aerospace supply chain – coming under increased pressure as demand for civil aircraft from developing economies continues to rise.
The site will mobilise the supply chain of Aircelle, a global leader in the nacelle market supplying to companies such as Airbus, Bombardier and Rolls Royce.
Mr Hood added: “We have already had a number of businesses express a strong interest in moving onto the park, in order to benefit from the increased capacity and capability, and seize the opportunity of the increase in demand for their services from the growing market in civil aviation and the emerging economies.”
The Burnley Express revealed in August that the company had bid for Regional Growth Fund money when Mr Hood put his company’s case to Vince Cable, the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills when he spoke to business leaders at Burnley’s Lancashire Digital Technology Centre.
Burnley Council chief executive Steve Rumbelow said: “Burnley’s strength in advanced manufacturing is a real asset and we are capitalizing on this to ensure Burnley punches about its weight.
“We have a reputation as a centre of excellence for manufacturing skills and this will ensure that this project is a success – breathing new life into a site that was part of our manufacturing history.”
Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle said: “This will create more jobs locally and within the aerospace supply chain as well as making use of this site left derelict since Michelin left more than 15 years ago.
“It is a massive investment in new jobs for Burnley. It is a vote of confidence in our area and a well-deserved boost for all the people involved in securing this investment.”