Ford confirms September 2020 closure of Bridgend factory

Ford's Bridgend engine-building plant looks set to close in 2020, putting 1,700 jobs at risk

Ford Bridgend engine factory

Ford has confirmed the closure of its Bridgend engine-building facility in South Wales, with 1,700 staff losing their jobs as a result. 

Rumours circulated last night that the American car giant was set to close Bridgend, with a statement today confirming the "proposed end of engine production and closure of Bridgend Engine Plant in South Wales by late 2020."

A company spokesperson confirmed to Auto Express that while the plans remained "proposals" until the full consultation process had been gone through, it could be assumed the plant would close on 25 September 2020.

Some 400 Bridgend staff had already taken voluntary redundancy from the site, and its closure will result in the remaining 1,300 workers losing their jobs. 

Ford's European president, Stuart Rowley, said the company remains "committed to the UK", but said "changing customer demand and cost disadvantages, plus an absence of additional engine models for Bridgend going forward, make the plant economically unsustainable in the years ahead.”

• Ford could lose £613m as a result of hard Brexit

The news follows stories earlier in the year that Ford was shedding 550 of its white-collar UK staff and, while some of those roles were at Bridgend, the company has either announced or enacted around 2,000 redundancies so far in the UK this year.

Bridgend has struggled with underutilisation in recent months. The plant used to build Ford's now defunct GTDi 1.5-litre diesel engine, while the 1.5-litre EcoBoost engine currently built at the plant is experiencing "reduced global demand".

Workers at Bridgend also build engines for Jaguar Land Rover under contract, however the "impending end" of JLR engine production saw Ford previously temporarily close the production line responsible for building Jaguar's AJ-V8 engine.

Rowley added that the firm knows "that closing Bridgend would be difficult for many of our employees”. Ford has a "comprehensive plan with an enhanced separation programme" for at-risk Bridgend workers, which will see the firm either attempt to place staff in other roles within the company, either in the UK or abroad, or put support in place to help them find work outside of Ford. 

Ford European restructuring plan

The Unite union previously urged Ford to convert Bridgend into an electric car battery and motor production facility. The site opened in 1980 and covers an area of 60 acres.

What do you think of the news about Bridgend? Let us know in the comments... 

Recommended

Best new cars coming in 2024
Best new cars coming in 2024 - header image
Best cars & vans

Best new cars coming in 2024

There are some big new models from the likes of BMW, Citroen, Dacia, Ford, MINI, Skoda and more on the way in 2024
29 Jan 2024
How Ford and Vauxhall became national treasures
Assortment of Fords and Vauxhalls
Features

How Ford and Vauxhall became national treasures

We take a look at the rivalry of two manufacturers that have battled for the hearts, minds and money of British car buyers
27 Dec 2023
'Once-dominant Ford and Vauxhall could become also-rans in the future'
Opinion - Ford plant
Opinion

'Once-dominant Ford and Vauxhall could become also-rans in the future'

Editor-in-chief Steve Fowler thinks Ford and Vauxhall need to get their pricing right in the EV era if they are to remain popular with customers
15 Nov 2023
New Ford Capri spied testing for the first time
Electric Ford Capri - front
News

New Ford Capri spied testing for the first time

Iconic Ford nameplate will return on MEB-based crossover
9 Nov 2023

Most Popular

New Kia EV9 Air 2024 review: entry-level model is appealing in almost every way
Kia EV9 Air - front
Road tests

New Kia EV9 Air 2024 review: entry-level model is appealing in almost every way

The all-electric Kia EV9 SUV has a new entry-point, and it just might be the pick of the range
1 Mar 2024
Car Deal of the Day: new razor-sharp Toyota C-HR hybrid SUV for £257 a month
Toyota C-HR 2.0 Hybrid GR Sport front corner static shot
News

Car Deal of the Day: new razor-sharp Toyota C-HR hybrid SUV for £257 a month

The recently-launched second generation of Toyota’s funky hybrid SUV is our Deal of the Day for 29th February
29 Feb 2024
New Renault 4 EV: price, specs, release date and all the details
Renault 4 - front (watermarked)
News

New Renault 4 EV: price, specs, release date and all the details

Renault’s retro revolution will continue with a new version of the iconic Renault 4 as a small electric car. Here’s everything we know about it
2 Mar 2024