The West Yorkshire Manufacturing Task Force was launched in November 2021 by Mayor Tracy Brabin, to support the growth of manufacturing companies and alliances in our region.
West Yorkshire’s manufacturers employ 112,000 people in 5,600 business and is the driving force behind £5bn of annual exports.
The task force brought together many representatives from manufacturing companies and alliances across the region to assess the manufacturing landscape and identify opportunities to support the continued growth of the sector.
Its recommendations were launched on 11th July at Produmax with the task force and Mayor Brabin in attendance. Mandy Ridyard Finance Director, and member of the task force said, “manufacturing matters and it’s great to see West Yorkshire and the Mayor are committed to this important sector.”
Chair of the task force Andrew Wright said, “We know we have a rich history in manufacturing but want to ensure we have a strong future.”
Focussing on growth through productivity and innovation, net-zero initiatives, skills, and international trade there are 4 key pillars to the recommendations: -
Enable growth through productivity, innovation, and technology – by 2028, more manufacturers will be engaged in innovation and will have boosted productivity.
Manufacturing for net-zero – by 2028, more manufacturers will be engaged with net-zero focused support programmes and be well on their way towards net-zero carbon.
The place to be and buy from – by 2028, more manufacturers will be exporting, and the region will see increased inward investment in the sector.
Skills for manufacturing – by 2028, the number of people accessing the manufacturing and engineering sector via apprenticeships, internships and other technical qualification routes will have doubled, the workforce will be more diverse, and more businesses will be capitalising on employment and skills support.
Facts about our sector:
£5 billion exports from West Yorkshire in 2020
7% of West Yorkshire businesses are manufacturers
14% of high growth business in West Yorkshire are manufacturers compared to 9% nationally
10% of all West Yorkshire apprenticeships are in manufacturing
9% of jobs in West Yorkshire are in manufacturing
6% growth in manufacturing companies in West Yorkshire since 2016
Members of the task force include Produmax, Shire Bed Company, Thornton and Ross, Siddall and Hilton Products, Trust Electric Heating and OE Electrics.
Tracy Brabin, Mayor of West Yorkshire, said “West Yorkshire is home to more manufacturing jobs than anywhere else in the North, and I want us to do all that we can to take our world-class manufacturing sector forward.”
Top - from left to right - Jasmine Hibbert (Produmax), Tracy Brabin (WY Mayor), Gemma (AW Hainsworth) and Alex Johnson (Produmax)
Bottom - Members of the West Yorkshire Manufacturing Task Force