Sheffield can ‘power a new engineering revolution’, says Theresa May
Prime Minister May has pointed to the arrival of new Boeing and McLaren plants as evidence for what she says is a pioneering approach by the ‘Steel City’.
Sheffield can help “power a new engineering revolution for the UK”, Prime Minister Theresa May has declared in an article highlighting a series of investment announcements in the northern English city.
The imminent arrival of new McLaren and Boeing plants in or near Sheffield were made possible by “the city pooling its skills and working together”, May wrote in an article in local paper The Star.
Sheffield, which acquired the nickname Steel City after becoming a manufacturing powerhouse during the Industrial Revolution, can “forge a new identity” by combining academic expertise in technology and engineering with a skilling-up of the local workforce, she said.
Earlier this year Boeing selected Sheffield as the location for its first European factory. The £20 million facility will manufacture parts and systems used on wings for the company's aircraft.
The firm will also initiate a major research and development programme with the University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) to develop new manufacturing techniques.
The proposed 2,300 square-metre factory will be built alongside the AMRC.
The Boeing announcement came just weeks after new AMRC partner McLaren Automotive revealed plans for a new chassis manufacturing facility in the Sheffield city region.
The AMRC was co-founded by the University of Sheffield and Boeing in 2001 as a centre for collaborative research.
The Prime Minister also highlighted a new £13 million investment package for the growing Sheffield tech firm The Floow.
She said: “Combining the research expertise of Sheffield University with the craftsmanship and skill of the city’s workforce, along with the drive of local leaders, has created the backdrop to the multi-million pound deals struck with two of the world’s most famous engineering names.
“It is this ambition and determination that is allowing the world’s first Steel City to forge a new identity. The city’s potential for cutting-edge technology and engineering clearly hasn’t been lost on international investors. And it’s not just McLaren and Boeing who have spotted it. Today’s announcement of a £13m investment into Sheffield’s thriving tech sector by three firms, including foreign investors, demonstrates the faith they have in the future of Sheffield.”