British ‘gigafactory’ will cost £3.8 billion and create 3,000 jobs

A British ‘gigafactory’ responsbile for producing electric car batteries has been backed by the government (Credits: PA)

A huge ‘gigafactory’ is set to be built in Northumberland that could bring thousands of jobs to the area.

The government has backed plans for the electric vehicle battery factory which will employ 3,000 people and create another 5,000 jobs.

Britishvolt’s plans for a plant in Blyth are being supported by the government’s Automotive Transformation Fund.

The government backing is for an undisclosed amount believed to be around £100 million.

The firm said the plant would require £3.8 billion to set up and start production, with the building itself costing £1.7 billion.

It should have the capacity to manufacture 300,000 battery units every year, supplying around 25% of the current UK market.

An artist’s impression issued by Britishvolt of their first full scale UK battery gigaplant in Northumberland. (Credits: PA)

It was in December 2020 that the firm first announced its intentions to build on a 93-hectare site where Britain’s largest coal-burning power station once stood.

Prime minister Boris Johnson commented: ‘Britishvolt’s plan to build a new gigafactory in Northumberland is a strong testament to the skilled workers of the North East and the UK’s place at the helm of the global green industrial revolution.

‘Backed by Government and private sector investment, this new battery factory will boost the production of electric vehicles in the UK, whilst levelling up opportunity and bringing thousands of new highly skilled jobs to communities in our industrial heartlands.’

The demand for electric car batteries is only going to increase as EVs become a more common sight on British roads.

In 2020, there were 108,205 new EV registrations in the UK, according to the Department for Transport, putting the total on the road to an impressive 300,000.

That’s no surprise: with the government’s 2030 deadline to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars, and with 2035 marked as the year to halt the sales of hybrids, for many the drive away from traditional fuels has stepped up a gear.

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