The manufacturer has officially opened its new facility in Stockport, which will support the production of the UK’s new Boxer MIVs.
UK Minister for Defence Procurement Jeremy Quin has presided over an opening ceremony for WFEL’s new Boxer Armoured Vehicle Production Facility in Stockport, England.
The facility will support the production of a new fleet of over 500 Boxer Mechanised Infantry Vehicles (MIVs) for the British Army as part of the government’s £2.3 billion program.
“Our Boxer program is playing a significant role in boosting prosperity, supporting skills, protecting over 1,000 jobs across the North West, North East, West Midlands, central Scotland, Wales and throughout the UK wider supply chain,” Minister Quin said during the event.
“This new production line is creating 120 new jobs at WFEL, further cementing our investment in UK innovation and expertise.”
The minister also observed a live demonstration of the latest Boxer variant – the Boxer Bridge-layer – which incorporates bridge sections manufactured by WFEL personnel in Stockport.
Ian Anderton, WFEL’s managing director, said he was pleased with the project’s progress, despite disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“In spite of the restrictions caused by the COVID pandemic, our teams have succeeded in keeping us on schedule, and we are now poised to begin production. We look forward to delivering the first vehicles to the Army in due course,” he said.
The opening of the facility follows the awarding of key supply chain contracts, including agreements with Horstman and David Brown Santasalo.
Earlier this month, WFEL’s Boxer Warehouse and Quality teams received the first machined component parts for its program, delivered by Lancashire-based BCW Manufacturing Group.
WFEL and RBSL were tapped to help manufacture the vehicles by prime contractor ARTEC – a joint venture between Rheinmetall and Krauss-Maffei Wegmann.
The companies have been tasked with the fabrication of the armoured vehicle structures, together with the assembly, integration and test of the complete vehicles.
[Related: Boxer MIV production hits new milestone]