A VEHICLE company has announced that its new factory in Bradford - the largest of its type in the UK, will create 150 jobs.

In a major boost for the city, the new factory near the M606 will be used to develop ambulances and police vehicles, and will also include a research and development facility.

Bradford-based VCS, which hit the headlines in 2020 when it produced the UKs first zero emissions electric ambulance, revealed the move today.

The factory will be based in the former Astonish House building on Staithgate Lane – which was vacated when cleaning company Astonish moved to a bigger unit off Gain Lane.

VCS, which started in 2009 with just five staff, has previously said it planned to invest around £5m in a new manufacturing facility in the city, which could produce almost 1,500 vehicles a year.

The announcement today said: “WN VTech has announced a major site move for VCS, the UK’s leading manufacturer of emergency services vehicles.

“The new site in Bradford will be the largest dedicated ambulance and police vehicle factory in the UK.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: The type of ambulances that will be developed at the factoryThe type of ambulances that will be developed at the factory (Image: VCS)

“The new facility will house a dedicated R&D (research and development) facility that doubles its engineering capability, enabling the company to maintain its reputation for creating the lightest vehicle conversions available while reducing emissions and increasing fuel efficiency.

“The site move will also create more than 150 jobs and feature a dedicated training academy to provide a boost to the local community.

“To facilitate the expansion, VCS has appointed several senior hires. Paul Webb takes on the role of Operational Managing Director, and Nick Withington becomes Electric Training Lead.”

These developments come as the company posted over 50 per cent increase in turnover over the last two years. The company has plans to target new international markets in the coming years.

Frank Barrett, CEO at WN VTech, commented: "Our recent growth and expansion are a testament to the dedication and continuous innovation of our teams across the Group. We are thrilled to welcome our new hires, and to move VCS into its new facility. The new site will ensure we continue to deliver world-class emergency vehicles to our customers in the UK and beyond, and I’m personally incredibly proud of the opportunities for skills training it will provide.

“Our recent innovations, such as vehicle electrification in the funeral transport sector in our bus division, demonstrate our commitment to sustainable technologies and cutting-edge innovation across global specialist vehicle industries. We are excited about the future and look forward to maintaining our position as a leader in specialist vehicle manufacturing."

Councillor Alex Ross-Shaw, Bradford Council’s Executive Member for Regeneration, Planning and Transport, said: “We’re delighted to be welcoming WN VTech’s VCS division to the district. The 150 new skilled jobs at the site, which will be the largest dedicated ambulance and police vehicle factory in the UK, combined with its dedicated training academy will be a great addition to the strong manufacturing sector in district.”