Nicky Morgan, MP for Loughborough on a factory tour

Manufacturing Growth Programme: a visit from Nicky Morgan, MP

13th November 2017   |   News

A Very Special Visitor

Recently we were visited by Nicky Morgan, MP for Loughborough, who asked to come by after reading about us in the Leicester Mercury (one of our local newspapers). The article was all about the assistance we had received from the Manufacturing Growth Programme (MGP) and what it had helped us to do.

Nicky joined us for coffee, a chat and a tour of our factory. Nicky was interested to hear our story – about how Jack started JC Metalworks over 30 years ago, as well as our plans for the future. Nicky asked us about the challenges we’re facing and we said that our biggest single challenge is recruiting the quality, skilled labour we need. We’re recruiting again at the moment (a buyer, an Account Manager and Technical Support for our Powder Coating Department) but skilled labour is in short supply. Nicky asked us how we were tackling the skills shortage and we told her about our Apprenticeship Scheme and how that was beginning to bear really positive fruit.

Of course the conversation turned to Brexit and what was happening on both a national and a local/regional level. As we have shared on our Twitter feed, we’re doing well and have put in place a third production shift to enable us to respond to demand. However, we keep reading about manufacturers who are facing tough times, are less positive about the future and who aren’t recruiting or investing in plant, facilities or training.  Nicky said that on both a national and regional level some businesses are being affected by the uncertainty of Brexit and that they were putting off making decisions, but in the main businesses are holding their own in the East Midlands. That’s great news we think. We need businesses to be positive and confident or at least bullish about the future. Successful companies equal a successful economy and we all need and want that!

Nicky asked us plenty of questions as she took the (soon-to-be) world-famous JC factory tour, saying that she liked to learn about different businesses. Before dashing off to her next appointment (and what a full diary it was!), Nicky invited us to keep in touch and let her know if she could try and help us with any issues or challenges in the future.

Thank you Nicky for popping by and hope to see you again soon!