A former West Midlands MEP has been appointed to the board of a UK manufacturing lobby group.

Ex Liberal Democrat MP and European politician Liz Lynne a become a main board member of EEF.

Ms Lynne worked with business during her time as MP for Rochdale from 1992 to 1997 and as MEP from 1997 until 2012.

She was vice president of the Employment and Social Affairs Committee in the European Parliament for the last five years and was elected 1st Vice President of the Committee in 2009.

She fought to retain the UK opt out on Working Time and the Pregnant Workers and Electro Magnetic Fields Directive.

“For too long manufacturing has not been given the prominence that it deserves and it’s importance to the economy was under-appreciated,” Ms Lynne said.

“However, the sector is now at the centre of the political debate and I look forward to working with EEF to ensure it’s interests are fully represented at UK and European level.”

Ms Lynne is also a founder member of the European Manufacturing Forum, which provides a channel for industry and EU representatives to debate key policy issues.

Terry Scuoler, chief executive of EEF, added: “We are delighted to have secured the advice and expertise of such a well respected politician with a strong manufacturing interest.

“Liz brings with her a wealth of experience at the highest political levels in both the UK and Brussels.

“Her knowledge will add significant value to our efforts to ensure that the interests of manufacturing and business receive the best possible hearing.”

EEF has more than 6,000 member companies, employing some 900,000 people from engineering, manufacturing, engineering construction and technology-based industries.