Airbus announced cutting edge research facility
Hundreds of highly skilled manufacturing and engineering jobs will be safeguarded in the South West thanks to a new £37 million research facility, the Chancellor has announced.
On a visit to Airbus in Filton, George Osborne joined the company’s COO Tom Williams to announce a £37 million investment in a new Wing Integration Centre to develop and test the aerospace technology of the future, ensuring that hundreds of highly skilled jobs remain in Britain for years to come.
The new ‘open access’ facility – capable of housing a full-scale civil airline wing – will also serve as a high-tech innovation space for other companies and sectors, outside of aerospace.
Opening in 2017, the centre will initially bring together around 300 highly skilled engineers who are currently based in other areas across the Filton site.
It is estimated that their work will safeguard over 900 R&D jobs in the south-west and then up to a further 1500 manufacturing jobs in the longer term.
The £37.2 million funding is being awarded through the aerospace technology funding programme, and is made up of an £18.6 million government investment matched by Airbus to create the new centre.
This investment forms part of the overall £3.9 billion aerospace technology funding programme, a joint industry and government funding commitment which looks to build on the UK’s strengths and develop the products and manufacturing technologies that will best position the UK to sustain its global competitiveness.
The programme is delivered in partnership between the Department for Business Innovation and Skills, the Aerospace Technology Institute and Innovate UK. ■