Government Confirms Safety of Michelin Grant
A £3.9 million grant awarded to Michelin through the Advantage West Midlands regional development agency for the improvement of its Stoke-on-Trent facility has been confirmed by the Department for Innovation and Skills. The grant will allow the French manufacturer to make plans for the modernisation of the site.
Local newspaper The Sentinel reports that the grant, reported in these pages on 23 February, had been in doubt following the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government’s decision to cancel 12 schemes put in place by the preceding Labour administration. The paper says the grant will “unlock investment of more than £20 million over the next five years”, which will be used to invest in machinery for the retreading of Michelin’s latest TBR tyres.
It quotes Peter Snelling, head of communications for Michelin in Stoke-on-Trent: “We have had confirmation from the DBIS that we are unaffected by any of this. The project goes ahead as planned.” The company retains its ambition to reduce the plant’s solvent emissions in addition to the increased retreading capabilities. The grant also provides a measure of security for the firm’s presence in North Staffordshire, thereby securing the 1,000-plus jobs in the city.