Once a major producer, the UK’s industrial sector has decreased over the last four decades, accounting for less than 10% of GDP. According to the Trade Unions Congress, the UK saw the worst decline in manufacturing employment of any advanced economy between 1960 and 2015, with the exception of Switzerland.
Over those 55 years, manufacturing employment declined by more than 0.4 percent each year, which was twice as fast as in Italy and Spain, and faster than in Germany, Norway, Sweden, France, and the United States, among others.
Experts anticipate that this tendency will soon reverse, as a number of corporations are constructing new factories in the United Kingdom.
Jefferson MFG, the creator of Factory Now and a champion for Britain’s manufacturing industry, tweeted: “We don’t create anything anymore?”
“Some of the manufacturers establishing new facilities in the UK are Aston Martin, Moog, Britishvolt, Siemens, Johnson Matthey, Ciner, Forterra, Knauf, Envision AESC, Ball, Crown, Swizzels, Pensana, SeAH, Stannah, ITM Power, and Rolls-Royce.”
“Having spent 25 years as a system engineer working with British Manufacturing businesses before quitting to be an industrial historian and been absurdly busy for all of it,” Richard Marks of the University of Reading tweeted.
“British manufacturing is very much alive and thriving; we simply don’t talk about it enough!”
Britishvolt, the pioneer in battery technology, is now constructing a massive gigaplant near Blyth, Northumberland.
By the end of the decade, it is expected to produce roughly 300,000 electric battery packs per year, with a total capacity of more than 38 GWh.
The £3.8 billion factory is one of the greatest industrial investments in the UK’s history, and the largest in the North-East of England since Nissan originally came in 1984.
With government assistance, the factory will produce around 3,000 direct and 5,000 indirect employment and will play an important role in reinforcing the UK’s technological core.
What makes this gigafactory even more significant is that, as other major automakers announce intentions to transition to electric vehicles, a UK-based facility might help incentivize more automakers to set up shop in the UK.
“The Britishvolt impact and our business model might encourage international automotive makers to establish up base in the UK,” Paul Franklin, Property Director at Britishvolt, told Express.co.uk.
“We will not just manufacture batteries for the UK market, but we will also sell to Europe.”
Meanwhile, Rolls Royce, the renowned British industrial giant, has turned its attention to the energy issue, constructing breakthrough new small modular reactors (SMRs) to reduce our dependency on imported fossil fuels.
These SMRs, which Rolls Royce believes are the nuclear industry’s future, are roughly the size of two football fields yet can power around half a million households (around the size of Leeds).
They will be manufactured on a factory assembly line and assembled at existing locations.
The business announced six prospective plant locations last month: Richmond in North Yorkshire, Deeside in Wales, Ferrybridge, Stallingborough in Lincolnshire, Sunderland, and Carlisle.