The tyre plant at Michelin in Stoke-on-Trent has secured £3.9 million in Government funding, in a move they tyre firm said would help safeguard the long-term future of the Stoke Industrial site.

The funding from Lord Mandelson’s Department for Business Innovation and Skills will go twards a £20m budget over a five-year period for the Remix truck tyre retreading operation.

It will mean the plan can the plant to respond to the need for the latest generation of innovative tyre technologies for the UK truck tyre market, producing more durable and environmentally-friendly products for lorries, coaches and buses.

Plant manager Peter Marsh said: “I am delighted to announce this significant investment which secures the long term future of our Stoke plant. With this assistance from Advantage West Midlands and the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, we shall be able to upgrade the factory to re-manufacture the latest generation of Michelin Durable Technologies truck and bus tyres, and so offer the customer products with even greater performance and economy in use.”

Project manager Jethro Smith added: “The project is an exciting and challenging technological advancement of the site and the investment will help build on the manufacturing skills base in North Staffordshire.”

Due to the economic situation, the project has been on hold for 12 months. The Michelin Group has now authorised further investment for developing the project design study, to be completed during 2010, with an anticipated project implementation period of several years.