Hitachi contract helps secure Knorr-Bremse jobs in Wiltshire

Friday, 9th August 2013

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Hundreds of jobs have been secured in Wiltshire after the signing of a multi-million pound railway contract.

Knorr-Bremse, which has a base in Melksham, has signed the £36m deal with Hitachi to supply brakes for 600 new high speed trains.

The company’s Wiltshire-based staff will help build the braking system and provide support for the next 28 years.

The Hitachi Class 800 series trains, which will replace the Intercity 125 fleet, are due in service in 2017.

‘Strong competition’

The trains are due to be used on the Great Western Main Line and will also replace those currently operating on the long distance routes from London to destinations including Aberdeen, Bristol, Cardiff and Edinburgh.

They are also scheduled to come into service on the East Coast Main Line during 2018.

Knorr-Bremse employs 350 staff in Melksham and 30 in Corsham.

Company spokesman Nick Brailey said it had won the contract despite strong competition.

“This is really the only mainline contract for trains coming up over the foreseeable future and the maintenance and support over 28 years is very important to secure jobs here.

“We look to be a long-term partner with Hitachi going forward building trains in the UK and hopefully exporting them to Europe.”


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