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British Industrial History

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Honda of the UK Manufacturing

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Honda of the UK Manufacturing Ltd. (informally HUM) is a United Kingdom–based manufacturing subsidiary of the multinational automotive company Honda. HUM operates a number of manufacturing plants, at a site in Swindon, which include casting, engine assembly, pressing, welding, painting, and car assembly activities. HUM employs around 3,400 people at the plants, which occupy a site covering around 370 acres and has made a total investment of over £1.5 billion in the Swindon plants.

Honda's decision to invest in production facilities in Swindon came as a result of Honda's collaboration with Rover, which started in 1979.

HUM was established in 1985 and production at the engine plant began in 1989.

In 1992, production of the Honda Accord began in Swindon, and a second engine line was installed.

In 1994 production of the Honda Civic began in Swindon.

In August 2000, it was revealed that United Kingdom–manufactured Honda cars would be exported to Japan for the first time.

In September 2001, HUM opened an second car assembly plant in Swindon, creating an additional 200 jobs at the site.

In December 2001, workers at the Swindon plants voted to form a union, and be represented by the Amalgamated Engineering and Electrical Union.

In 2002, production of the Honda Accord ended at Swindon. In October 2002, Ken Keir, the then–managing director of HUM, stated that Honda would maintain vehicle production in the United Kingdom. This was irrespective of whether or not it joined the Eurozone.

In September 2006, it was announced that Honda would be recruiting an additional 700 workers for the Swindon plants, and raising production of vehicles at the site by 32% to 250,000. In February 2008 it was announced that Honda would be making an £80 million investment in new production facilities at the Swindon site for the manufacture of plastic car parts and metal castings for engines.

On 30 January 2009, it was announced that direct workers at the Swindon site would be laid off for four months until 1 June, with full-pay for the first two months of the period and about half-pay for the remainder. Indirect staff or maintenance employees would lose approximately £1500 and be forced to remain at work.

In October 2009, HUM began production of the Honda Jazz.

In September 2012, Honda announced a £267 million investment programme the Swindon site. This was to support the introduction of new models of the Civic and CR-V, and an new 1.6-litre diesel engine. The investment would take total investment at the site to around £1.5 billion, and would increase the workforce to 3,500. Which they then backtracked on and implemented large scale redundancy.

2015 Understood to employ 3,400 at Swindon

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