Labour Welcomes New Gigafactory

The worst kept secret in Somerset is that the Tata Group are going to build a £4billion battery factory on the site of the old Royal Ordance Factory near Bridgwater creating 4,000 jobs and set to be the biggest in the country in fact ammounting to half the UKs battery production by the 2030s.. Along with literally everybody else, Labour is thrilled at the prospect but has some words of warning and conditions that need to be adhered to based on the Hinkley experience.

Cllr Tim Mander Chairman of Bridgwater Constituency Labour Party

Cllr Tim Mander

“Labour welcomes the investment in green technology particularly on such a large brownfield site which has already benefited from large investment in new road infrastructure. However, we are concerned to ensure that local people do not lose out. There should be a proper and full commitment to invest in local training via the local schools and colleges. As regards accommodation once again we need to ensure that is a cap put on spiralling private rents to avoid further HPC type market distortion. Lastly there needs to be proper investment in public transport particularly buses but also trains with more cross-country trains stopping at Bridgwater station. “

Cllr Mick Lerry

Mayor of Bridgwater Cllr Mick Lerry (Labour, Victoria)

“This development will provide high skilled jobs for the future labour force. Labour welcomes this green economy investment for battery development which is needed for the electric car production and more batteries need to be developed in Europe including UK.”

Leader of Bridgwater Town Council Cllr Brian Smedley (Labour, Westover)Cllr

Cllr Brian Smedley

“Gravity is an important development for Bridgwater, and we are very pleased it will be here, but we need to learn the lessons from the Hinkley project. We want a serious and genuine say for Bridgwater Town Council in any steering group to look at Community Benefit which they are calling ‘locality investment’ and there need to be ‘local labour agreements’ in place.”

Cllr Leigh Redman Leader of Somerset County Labour Group

Cllr Leigh Redman

“Somerset Labour is over the moon following the announcement of the Giga factory sited in the heart of our County, we fully support the proposed investment in Somerset and see it as a long-term benefit for every corner of our community.”

“This investment at Gravity will create a significant number of long term, high value, well paid jobs for local people to access, at the same time helping continue the education opportunities that started with HPC, giving local people of every age further opportunities to learn or reskill, we lose too many young people who are forced to move away to learn, often resulting in them staying away to work.”


“We need to better understand the business rate retention mechanism & funding options, particularly in the current financial situation that Somerset council finds itself, that forms part of the agreement, we will need financial support from government to ensure local council funding is not impacted negatively, Somerset council budget can not support any further unnecessary strain.”


“Somerset Council Labour group looks forward to working with Agratas, partners and officers on this exciting project.”

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