Hitachi Rail opened its £82m train manufacturing factory this morning in Newton Aycliffe.
The historic event in which Hitachi declared the rail manufacturing and assembling factory officially open for business, was attended by 500 guests including ministers and journalists from around the world. Prime Minister David Cameron was also among the guests.
The facility has been built close to Heighington Crossing where George Stephenson assembled the very first locomotive.
Engineering manager at the factory, Stephen Richards said “We have all of the heritage here in the North East with the introduction of the very first locomotive very close to our factory, and we’re proud of the fact that we’re bringing that industry back here.”
The facility will create 730 jobs, a further 200 construction jobs and thousands more across the supply chain. With the production capability including high-speed trains, commuter trains and metro trains the facility will supply rolling stock, traction equipment, signaling, traffic management systems, and maintenance depots.
Hitachi Rail Europe is the leading inward investor in County Durham with the Rail Vehicle Manufacturing Facility being the largest private sector investment in the North East.
Operations Manager at the manufacturing plant, Mark Chilvers said:
“The investment that we make in a factory impacts everyone’s lives. A better rail infrastructure means a better life for a lot of people.”
As experienced engineers and recruitment specialists in Rail, at CAS we believe the opening of this facility is brilliant. It is exciting that the industry is, in essence, being brought back home. It will create so many work opportunities for people of the North East.