By Roger Vielvoye
British Leyland has stepped in to save the 700 jobs at the Marshall-Fowler plant in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, by purchasing the last British-owned crawler tractor manufacturer from the Thos. W. Ward group for about £3m. It will use the factory for expanding its Aveling-Barford construction equipment manufacturing operations. Aveling-Barford, a major part of the Leyland Special Products group, makes earth-movinig and road-making equipment at Grantham, about 35 miles away.
British Leylaind will invest an additional £2.7m in Marshall- Fowler’s two factories to expand the manufacturing capacity. The acquisition has been approved by the Department Of Industry after consultation with Lord Ryder. chairman-designate of the National Enterprise Board. Mr David Abell, managing director of Leyland Special Products, said yesterday: “There is no question of British Leyland, now backed by government money, using it to save a lame duck. The Marshall-Fowler business has been very carefully examined, and it makes sound financial sense for us to take it over. The product ranges of both Aveling-Barford and Marshall-Fowler are in many ways complementary. For some time we have been looking for ways of expanding capacity at Grantham without a massive capital expenditure.”
Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...
Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.