The Rise of UK manufacturing and What the General Public Doesn’t Know


If you work in the wonderful world of manufacturing then you will most likely have heard of the many brilliant news stories about the industry, which have particularly soared in the past month.

However, this news may come as a surprise to the general public as there is little or non-existent media coverage of this in the mainstream news.

Of course, it is understandable that the majority of the media are not able to cover all of the stories from the industry, but whilst the fear of Brexit and the recent general election continue to fill the newspapers, we thought that the world ought to know that there is hope for the future and for the UK economy.

Though there has been recent coverage from Sky about manufacturing demand being at its highest level and news about BMW Mini opening a new production factory in the UK has filtered into the media, there are still hundreds of positive news stories about investments, contracts, new facilities being built, big companies reshoring to Britain, and hundreds of new jobs created that has not reached the general public.

We, therefore, thought we would show you that all is not doom and gloom with some highlights of great UK manufacturing news.


Footwear giant, Clarks is resuming volume manufacturing in the UK with a new arm being constructed in Somerset, which will have the capacity to produce up 300,000 pairs of its Desert Boots range a year. The investment is set to create up to 80 technical and managerial jobs.

Jaguar Land Rover has announced plans to increase its UK workforce by 15% to 42,000 staff. They’ve planned to recruit 5,000 engineers and technical staff over the next year as part of their plan to deliver the cars of the future.

Vegetarian-friendly food manufacturer, Quorn Foods, plans to create 300 jobs with a £150m investment over the next five years to increase production at its Teesside plant.

Construction work has been completed on the new £100m Amazon logistics facility in Doncaster which is a whopping 1.1million sq. ft. facility – the equivalent of 14 football pitches.

Engineering giant, BAE, has invested £25m into a technical centre in Cumbria which is expected to train and deliver courses to 1,000 apprentices.

AMini-Renown-Engineering-News-Item fully electric version of the Mini will be manufactured at the BMW Cowely plant in Oxford, which is expected to go into production in 2019. This shows BMW’s confidence in the UK, despite the looming question of Brexit.

The UK is to get a world-leading £65m Digital Aviation Research and Technology Centre at Cranfield University. The centre is expected to develop innovative solutions for the 21st-century aviation sector.

Sunderland has announced plans to attract 20,000 skills technology and manufacturing jobs to the North-East as part of a £1.3bn investment in the infrastructure and development of the city over the next nine years.

McCain Foods has won approval for a £100m Scarborough plant expansion, and say that are committing themselves to Yorkshire for decades to come.


Marshall’s Aerospace and Defence Group has been awarded a new £110m Ministry of Defence (MoD) contract to replace the centre wing box for the RAF Hercules C-130J aircraft. The project will safeguard 330 jobs in Cambridge.

Construction is expected to start next month for supercar McLaren Automotive’s new £50m manufacturing plant near Sheffield. The firm has signed a 20-year lease for a new 75,000 sq. ft. bespoke unit at the Advanced Manufacturing Park.

Economy Secretary, Ken Skates, has announced that £30m worth of funding has been confirmed for the first phase of a new Advanced Manufacturing Research Institute in Deeside.

A Spanish train manufacturer, Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles (CAF) has announced plans to open a £30m factory in Newport, which is expected to create 300 new jobs.

The University of Bath has received a Government investment of £28.9m for the Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems, which will lead to the development of ultra-low emission vehicles.

Global engineering services company, Tata Technologies, has made a £20m investment in its new European Innovation and Development Centre (EIDC) in Warwick, which is set to create 200 new jobs.

Canadian-owned McCloskey International has completed a £17m investment into a new 120,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facility in Northern Ireland. 117 additional jobs have already been made at the company in the last three years.


One of the world’s biggest chocolate makers, Cadbury, has unveiled its first big change since the completion of the £75m investment into new production lines. Two of its chocolate bars will now be made at the Bournville factory in the UK from August.

European white good manufacturer, Beko, will open a new 345,000 sq. ft. facility in Staffordshire, allowing them to work from one site, and providing them room to expand.

The new £13m 45,000 sq. ft. National Centre for Motorsport Engineering (NCME) at Bolton University is expected to open this Autumn.

Rapidly expanding British engineering firm, Penso Group, is to open a new Coventry factory as part of their growth and development plan after securing a £11m funding package with Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks.

Toyota based in Derbyshire has created 90 new jobs after they win approval for a 15-acre plant expansion that will store an extra 3,500 cars.

Dessert maker, Gu Puds, has created 100 new jobs at its firm with the arrival of a new facility and innovation centre in Stafford, where they will be coming up with new desserts.


Icon Aerospace Technology has invested £7m into a new production facility in Retford with an aim to double output.

Leading independent machine tool supplier, Engineering Technology Group (ETG) launches Norton Technical Academy and £6m skills gap plan.

Humberside Engineering Training Association (HETA) is to invest £4m in a new head office and workshop in hull which is expected to train engineers of the future. The 34,000 sq. ft. of space will increase the numbers of apprentices and adult learners that they have.

The UK’s leading manufacturer of vehicle covers, Specialised Covers, has announced an investment of £1.8m in a new facility, which will double their production capacity.


We hope that these many positive UK manufacturing stories have restored some of your faith in the UK economy and reassured you that the industry is doing everything it can to ensure that the effects of Brexit are minimal. To hear more about these stories, follow Renown Group and Jefferson Group on Twitter or sign up for updates from The Manufacturer, The Engineer, and Zenoot.