The Duke of York is to officially open the new £40 million JCB Heavy Products factory in Staffordshire later this month.
The Duke, who is the United Kingdom’s special representative for international trade and investment, will visit the plant in Uttoxeter on July 22. He will meet shopfloor and office employees during a tour of the facility before officially opening the factory at a ceremony which will be watched by the 350-strong JCB Heavy Products’ workforce.
As well as the official opening, the Duke will also present JCB Heavy Products with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise, which honours a 60 per cent increase in exports of JCB tracked and wheeled excavators.
JCB chief executive officer Matthew Taylor said: “I’m delighted that His Royal Highness is to officially open the new JCB Heavy Products factory as it represents one of the biggest single investments in JCB’s history and will be pivotal to our growth once the recovery arrives.
“It is one of the world’s most modern manufacturing plants and is a factory we are all very proud of. This investment gives us a huge opportunity to take the quality of an already successful tracked and wheeled excavator range to new heights.
“This is a very exciting phase in the development of JCB’s excavator business and we’re delighted to have the opportunity to show the Duke of York what this means for JCB and for British manufacturing.”
JCB Heavy Products relocated from its site in the centre of Uttoxeter to the new facility next to the A50 and full production of its 25-strong range of tracked and wheeled excavators, weighing from seven to 46 tonnes, began earlier this year.
The new 450,000 sq ft plant has the capability to produce 8,000 machines a year.