Indian conglomerate Tata Group and owners of Jaguar Land Rover have promised to spend £4 billion to build battery cell gigafactory in West Somerset, creating over 4,000 jobs and a much needed boost for the UK's automotive sector. In fending off bids from Spain, Tata hope to receive up to £500 million worth of tax breaks (Source) from British government for the facility which plans to go online in Puriton near Bridgwater in 2026.
The plant's 40GW capacity will be used by JLR and Tata Motors who serve as anchor customers.
Natarajan Chandrasekaran, Tata Sons chairman, announced the investment this morning (19 July): “Our multi-billion-pound investment will bring state-of-the-art technology to the country... With this strategic investment, the Tata Group further strengthens its commitment to the UK, alongside our many companies operating here across technology, consumer, hospitality, steel, chemicals, and automotive."
Ian Liddell-Grainger, Conservative MP for Bridgwater and West Somerset, welcomed the news of the investment: "Bridgwater is geared up for industrial - that's what we do best. And we've delivered yet another huge project for the area."
West of England’s Labour mayor Dan Norris also welcomed the news: "Given the scale of the investment, we have a real opportunity to shape the green jobs revolution, not just here in the west, but nationally and internationally, to ensure these jobs of the future are high quality, well paid and unionised."
The factory is close to the new Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant, which is scheduled to open by 2030.