Britishvolt gigaplant in Northumberland, artist's impression, via PA, Jan 2022Britishvolt gigaplant in Northumberland, artist's impression, via PA, Jan 2022


Gigafactory proposal for Northumberland wins millions in government funding

  • Britishvolt wants to build an EV battery gigaplant in Blyth
  • Government is providing funding – said to be some £100m
  • Gigafactory should be able to make 300,000 batteries a year
  • They’ll provide about a quarter of the UK’s current market needs

Time 11:43 am, January 21, 2022

The government has thrown its weight behind plans for an electric vehicle battery gigaplant in Northumberland that will employ 3,000 people and create 5,000 more jobs.

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

It hasn’t been revealed as yet exactly how much is being given, but it’s believed to be around £100m.

The firm said the plant will need £3.8bn to set up and start production.

The building alone will cost £1.7bn, and Britishvolt said the in-principle funding offer had enabled a long-term partnership with Trixtax and Abrdn that will deliver that amount in private funding.

It should be able to make 300,000 batteries a year, providing about a quarter of the current UK market’s needs.

As reported by Car Dealer, the firm first announced its intentions to build on the 93-hectare site – where Britain’s largest coal-burning power station once stood – in December 2020.

Boris Johnson said: ‘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 news comes on the heels of plans for what will be Britain’s biggest gigafactory – in Coventry – winning support from the prime minister after councils gave it the green light.

It’s also been reported that the number of public electric car charging points in the UK rose by 37 per cent last year.

According to new figures from the Department for Transport drawn from charger location mapping company Zap-Map, as of January 1 there were 28,375 public chargers across the country, of which 5,156 were rapid chargers.

The increase means there are 7,600 more chargers versus January 1, 2021, while the number of rapid devices has risen by 33 per cent – an extra 1,276 chargers.

Pictured at top is an artist’s impression of how the Britishvolt gigaplant will look

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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