Mayor's delight at success of Northumberland manufacturing hub

North of Tyne Mayor Jamie Driscoll praised staff for their hard work when he toured a Northumberland PPE factory.

By Joshua Wright
Wednesday, 16th March 2022, 4:24 pm
Mayor Jamie Driscoll touring the Northumbria Manufacturing and Innovation Hub.
Mayor Jamie Driscoll touring the Northumbria Manufacturing and Innovation Hub.

Commending the hub for its track record on jobs and ambition, the Mayor was able to see both the storage and the manufacturing facilities the site has to offer. In addition, members of staff were there to greet and talk with him.

He said: “It’s heartening to see this work going from strength to strength, There’s a lot of bad news at the moment, yet here jobs are being created and apprentices are getting a start to a long-term career.

“Bringing essential supplies back in house makes such sense. It’s keeping money here, it’s securing vital supplies in a difficult world, and it’s better for the environment."

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The Manufacturing and Innovation Hub, which is run by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, produces a range of PPE items ranging from gowns and theatre hoods to scrubs and pillows.

The hub acquired its 40,000 sq m Seaton Delaval base in February 2021, moving out of Cramlington after outgrowing its previous production space.

Given the demand and success of the production project, the trust purchased the space having initially leased it. Bolstering the trust’s Community Promise, the site says it has created change for the better in not just healthcare, but the wider education, employment and economic aspects of people’s lives.

Mayor Driscoll added: “Stopping and chatting to the staff gave me the sense of how innovative Northumbria Heathcare is – and how enthusiastic the team are.

“To see how far it’s come in such a relatively short space of time is a testament to the staff and the entire Northumbria Healthcare team.”

Having already won awards for its capabilities, the hub says it is always looking to the future.

Northumbria Healthcare’s Divisional Director for the factory, Sarah Rose, said: “It was great to welcome the North of Tyne Mayor last week as what we do here is so important and it’s only right to keep looking forward and thinking about what is next.

“We’ve come so far already and we will keep creating potential and possibility for the trust, county and region. This is only the beginning.”