Work has started on a new £12m facility at Samlesbury Aerospace Enterprise Zone, marking the latest phase in its development as a national centre of excellence for advanced engineering and manufacturing.
Representatives from the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership (LEP), Lancashire County Council (LCC) and BAE Systems attended the ground-breaking ceremony at BAE Systems’ new asset management facility off Sir Frederick Page Way.
The asset management facility will enable BAE Systems to work more effectively and allow for growth. It is the third building BAE Systems has chosen to build on the Enterprise Zone, along with their logistics centre and the world-class Academy for Skills and Knowledge.
It will be used to securely store and process assets, allowing BAE Systems to consolidate its existing storage currently spread across the UK and enable a growth in its capacity to fulfil new contracts.
It will take 12 months to complete the facility, which is closer to existing BAE Systems sites and the proposed Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC), allowing easier access to, and distribution of, specialised equipment, parts and tools.
Samlesbury Aerospace EZ is already home to two important aerospace facilities – the £16m Academy for Skills and Knowledge and the £15m Wincanton Defence and Logistics Centre, along with being the site of the proposed North West AMRC.
LEP Director, Miranda Barker, said: “This new facility marks another significant investment in the Samlesbury Aerospace EZ, which is home to a growing number of top-class, high-tech facilities.
“Lancashire is an attractive place to invest. We have a critical mass of world-class aerospace and advanced manufacturing industries, a long tradition of innovation and enterprise, and we can offer excellent facilities, infrastructure and support like those at Samlesbury.
“Adding to Lancashire’s key sector focus spanning automotive, energy and as the world’s fourth largest aerospace cluster, the continued investment by BAE and across the Enterprise Zone further stimulates investment in and by our multi-layered supply chain of local SMES, the existence of which drives the global success of the economy for us all.
“The four Enterprise Zones in the Lancashire Advanced Manufacturing and Energy Cluster combine to make up an economic and investor offer of Northern Powerhouse significance, creating over 10,000 new high value jobs.
“This latest development shows how we and our partners are leveraging these assets to drive investment, economic growth and job creation across Lancashire.“
Dave Holmes, Director of Manufacturing, BAE Systems, said: “We look forward to welcoming further aerospace and advanced manufacturing business to the EZ as it develops further.”
Stephen Young, Lancashire County Council’s Executive Director of Growth, Environment, Transport and Community Services, said: “Lancashire is home to the fourth largest aerospace cluster in the world. The Enterprise Zone is a major opportunity to further develop the county’s long-established expertise in advanced manufacturing.
“By working with BAE Systems and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership, we’re opening up this site to create high-quality jobs, bring economic growth and support our world-class advanced manufacturing sector.”
At the end of last year, the LEP completed £11m of infrastructure works at the Enterprise Zone, which include a new spine road, two new access points and ecology and drainage works.