Monday, June 24, 2024

Derby writes to Prime Minister to prevent closure of train factory

Marketing Derby is campaigning to prevent closure of the Alstom Derby train factory, a move costing 1,300 direct and 15,000 indirect jobs.

Closure would end 185-years of railway heritage and leave the UK as the only G7 country without the ability to design, develop, build and test trains.

Over the past few days the investment promotion agency for Derby have built a public-private-community campaign. Hundreds of businesses have given their backing and over the weekend 30,000 people saw the campaign at Pride Park Stadium.

This week Marketing Derby will hand in a letter to the Prime Minister asking for his intervention and requesting meetings with the Secretary of State for Transport and the CEO of Alstom.

“Standing between this disaster for UK plc and survival is the procurement of a mere 5 additional trains for the Elizabeth Line,” the organisation notes.

See the letter to the Prime Minister below.

 

Dear Prime Minister

SAVE OUR TRAINS – DO THE DEAL!

We are writing as a public-private community of hundreds of businesses and thousands of people from Derby to ask you to personally intervene to ensure the Alstom Derby train manufacturing site is saved.

When you visited the area on 22nd March you kindly committed to your government to doing ‘everything it can’ to ensure new orders. Since then, whilst there has been plenty of talk, there has been no progress and we are now looking at the imminent closure of a factory in operation since 1839.

A commitment to fund ten new trains needed for the Elizabeth Line – a success for UK plc, designed and built at Alstom in Derby and used by millions of passengers – will be enough to keep the plant alive until HS2 and other future work is initiated in 2026.

Closure is unconscionable.

It will mean the UK being the only G7 country without a site or capacity to design, develop, build, and test new trains – a body blow for UK pride that will cost the taxpayer billions of pounds over the next few decades.

Conversely, the procurement of ten trains saves the plant, saves thousands of jobs in the national supply chain, and will lead to Alstom making Derby a global HQ for their new commuter train, the Adessia. Derby is already the global HQ for monorail, having recently designed and built the system now in operation in Cairo.

Derby is a proud railway city, home to Europe’s largest business rail cluster and soon to be HQ to Great British Railways, created by your government to bring a guiding mind to track and train (hopefully preventing pipeline cliff-edges like this).

Prime Minister, so much to gain, so much to lose – all dependent on quick action on ten new trains.

As a broad, cross-sector, cross-party, cross-community we urge you to intervene.

Yours sincerely

Cllr Baggy Shanker

Leader of Derby City Council

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