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Burberry to create 1,000 jobs in Leeds South Bank

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20 Nov 2015

British global luxury brand Burberry has announced plans to develop a new state-of-the-art manufacturing and weaving facility in South Bank, Leeds. The proposal represents an initial investment of over £50m in the heart of Yorkshire and is expected to provide permanent employment for more than a thousand people. Work on the new site is due to begin in 2016 with a current completion date of 2019.

The proposed site will allow Burberry to continue to produce its most iconic product, the heritage trench coat, in Yorkshire where the brand has been manufacturing for over half a century. The proposal is divided into phases of development. The first one, announced today, will see an area of the South Bank site redeveloped to create a new facility that will offer increased capacity for trench coat production, more sustainable and efficient ways of manufacturing, and the potential to develop and produce other products at the site. Subsequent phases of development contain plans to restore and renew the Grade I listed Temple Works building.

Announcing the landmark project, Burberry Chief Creative and Chief Executive Officer Christopher Bailey said: “I am delighted to announce that the next chapter of Burberry’s manufacturing story will be right here in Yorkshire. Burberry is a proudly British brand and we are so excited that our plan for a new site in South Bank, Leeds, means that we will continue to produce our most iconic product – the trench coat – in this wonderful part of the country for many years to come.”

The new facility will replace the two existing manufacturing and weaving centres in Castleford and Cross Hills, Yorkshire. As part of the proposals, Burberry will be facilitating their regeneration for the local communities. The plan is for all current teams from Castleford and Cross Hills to relocate to the new site, bringing all employees together under one roof.

The news was welcomed by Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, who said: ““Burberry is one of Britain’s most iconic brands and it’s fantastic to hear about their plans to keep manufacturing in Britain by investing over £50m into a new production facility in Leeds. Their decision to base the new centre in the heart of Yorkshire, creating hundreds of new jobs in the region is a massive vote of confidence in our plans to build a Northern Powerhouse.”

Working with local and national government, the proposed production facility will provide:

  • State-of-the art facilities to enable increased production of the iconic trench coat
  • Capacity to produce expanded outerwear categories
  • Improved efficiency and sustainability within the production process
  • A bespoke apprenticeship programme designed to preserve unique textile manufacturing skills in Yorkshire

Councillor Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council said: “This is wonderful news for Leeds which has its own rich heritage of cloth making and weaving. Burberry is a truly global British brand and it is an honour that the trench coat, an icon that is sought after around the world, will be made in Leeds’ South Bank. We welcome this significant investment in Leeds and are proud that Yorkshire will continue to be the manufacturing home of this great British business, bringing jobs, training and regeneration to the area.”