While Huddersfield may have shed its image of being an industrialised northern town, manufacturing remains a core strength in the region’s economy.
In fact the area lies third in the UK, behind Birmingham and Leeds, for the largest manufacturing employment base in the country, with 32,000 jobs in the industry.
Yet to survive the challenge of cheap manufacturing competition from Asia, Huddersfield firms have turned their focus to advanced manufacturing and engineering. As a result, specialised manufacturing organisations, employing highly skilled individuals have established a strong presence in the area.
Cummins Turbo Technologies is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of turbochargers for diesel engines. The company’s Holset turbochargers are used by the automotive industry, for power generation and marine applications.
When Mamas & Papas began designing and manufacturing nursery and baby products in Huddersfield, the company’s contemporary products changed the industry forever. Now the company is a multi-national organisation, consistently exploiting new markets and keeping ahead of the competition.
David Brown Gear Systems is a world leading manufacturer of power transmission products, for major industrial and defence markets around the world, including the growing renewable energy market. In December 2009, it was announced that the company will supply prototype gearboxes, made in Huddersfield, for Project Britannia, a 10MW offshore wind turbine currently under development.
Meanwhile the nearby town of Batley is the residence of Fox’s Biscuits. Part of Northern Foods plc, Fox’s Biscuits is responsible for manufacturing famous biscuits including Rocky, Classic and Party Rings. Fox’s Biscuits are exported around the world to Europe, North America and the Far East.
The town of Dewsbury remains one of the country’s most famous furniture manufacturing regions. Renowned for its bed manufacturing, Dewsbury is also home to Kozeesleep Beds and Shackletons, one of the UK’s specialist furniture providers.
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