Opinion : Why a hard Brexit risks destroying much of car manufacturing in the UK

Honda's Swindon factory is to close in 2021.
Honda’s Swindon factory is to close in 2021

The news that Honda is to close its Swindon factory and that Nissan isn’t bringing production of the X-Trail SUV to the UK isn’t surprising. It’s as predictable as it is sad. The UK has to face facts and accept that the ‘business model’ that underpins the presence of Honda, Nissan and Toyota in the UK is in the process of being destroyed.

That’s in part down to our own Brexit decision which (even if a deal avoids the imposition of WTO tariffs (10%) on car exports to the EU) would still make the UK a poor place to build cars destined for the EU market due to issues such as ‘Rules of Origin’ (which risk preventing the export of such cars to third countries under the EU’s existing Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) as they would not qualify as ‘EU manufactured’).

The other reason is that the new EU-Japan FTA progressively removes tariffs on direct imports from Japan to the EU, thus reducing the incentive to manufacture ‘in region’.

The Japanese presence in UK car manufacturing won’t disappear overnight (the car industry doesn’t work like that) but, ten years from now, it’s unlikely to be more than a shadow of today. Remember, Honda, Nissan and Toyota already have production in place around the world, so exporting to ‘global markets’ from the UK instead of exporting to the EU is of limited appeal to them – and they don’t benefit from devaluation either as they import a high percentage of components.

‘This represents the collapse of an economic pillar built up with the strong backing of Margaret Thatcher in the ’80s under the influence of her Policy advisors, key among whom was (a little ironically) John Redwood.’

Encouraging inward Japanese investment was seen (probably rightly) as a better bet than continuing subsidies to support an ‘indigenous’ car manufacturing industry and never was that thinking more explicit than in the mid-1980s when Nissan was given £125m of Government support to help open Sunderland while simultaneously the funding requested by Austin-Rover (in its 1985 Corporate Plan) was not approved in full – instead that company was forced to abandon development of new ‘all-British’ cars (such as the AR6 Metro replacement) and instead become essentially an offshoot of Honda (which dovetailed beautifully with the plan).

It may have upset traditionalists, but backing the Japanese has worked (until now) in that they have provided the output, the balance of payments benefits, the employment and the support for a UK-owned supplier base which Austin-Rover (formerly British Leyland) once did (but was struggling to do by the ’80s). Nissan alone produces over 500,000 vehicles annually in Sunderland, equivalent to the entire output of Italy’s motor industry, and exports 80% of them, mostly to the EU.

However, standing a long way back, we are doing something incredibly stupid as a nation. We have chosen one horse to back over another, seen that horse sustained by Government grants and loans and grants from the European Investment Bank that might have otherwise gone to an ‘indigenous’ British company (Nissan UK has received £450m in loans from the EIB plus £347m in grants and other funding from the UK and the EU since 1986 according to the study by Farnsworth of York University).

And now, having backed that horse and let our indigenous volume car industry wither away (I’m not including relatively ‘premium’ JLR and MINI in that) – we are shooting the horse that we have backed.

Chris Cowin


  1. This is a very insightful piece on our present car industry crisis.. Thank you Chris! Interesting to note that the Electric Note at Sunderland has not been highlighted in this X Trail demise which should if we are to wean ourselves away from fossil fuels be a major player at the factory. I believe Norway can’t get enough of them for the great advantages they bring in free parking and tax incentives in that country. The other question is what are we going to make in the vehicle industry post Brexit? The van factory of Europe I have heard it said with Peugeot/Citroen at Luton and Ellesmere Port making Partners and Berlingos and the. Vivaro’s successor. And what of this mythical MINI gearbox that goes halfway round Europe and back again to be assembled in Oxford – can it be manufactured in the UK only or is that just fantasy thinking? I am beginning to think that there is some very muddled thinking in the govt motor industry policy section, maybe we are happy to be the van maker of Europe with the new Land Rover Defender made in Slovakia and the MINI made elsewhere?

  2. Sorry, I missed the bit where Brexit had a major impact… the UK is a massively strong car market and has been in the world top 10 as long as I can remember, car makers do, and will continue to all want a part of it.
    If people took a more patriotic approach to vehicle (and other) purchases, like the French do for example, maybe that would be better – Ford have not made a single Ford badged passenger car here for nearly 20 years, people don’t care, Vauxhall make a % of the Astras sold here, nothing else, no Corsas, no Insignias (remember Luton car making closing in 2004, not many people seem to…) – people don’t care.
    Car manufacturers want to move their production to Eastern Europe, China, India and Russia to increase their profit margins, nothing to do with Brexit, it’s all about the money – if people told them “I want a car made in the UK” then there wouldn’t even be a discussion to have.

    • Well Chris – the bit where Brexit is likely to have a major impact is the bit where (in “no deal” as now threatened) tariffs are introduced on the export of cars from the UK to the EU while simultaneously (as is confirmed) the EU removes tariffs on direct imports from Japan. Where would you build your cars for the European market if you were a Japanese manufacturer ? It’s that portion of the industry – Toyota, Nissan and Honda building cars in the UK for the EU market – that I am concerned about. I take your point that the UK is a big market but that doesn’t mean we have always built in this country as many cars as we consume – or anything like that number. In the early ’80s (before the Japanese started producing in the UK) car production totalled approx. 1 million units annually. New car registrations were almost twice that (1.8 million in 1983). We have got much better – thanks in part to the arrival of the Japanese (also thanks to the growth of JLR & Mini one must say) and despite the exit of Ford and Vauxhall (except Astra) from UK car production. In 2017 UK new car registrations were 2.5 million and we produced 1.7 million – in other words UK production of cars now equates to approx. 70% of consumption. Of course most cars produced are exported, and most cars sold in the UK are imported but we are much closer to a position of trade balance than in the past (especially if you adjust for vehicle value and don’t just talk in “units”). That is good for the economy and its what politicians were aiming for when they seduced the Japanese back in the ’80s.
      But (which is where we started) that progress risks being reversed if the Japanese no longer see the UK as a sensible place to produce for the EU market. Your comment seems to imply that you believe that after Brexit companies like Ford and Vauxhall will resume mass production in the UK and that a wave of “buy British” sentiment combined with the effect of import tariffs will see UK car production for the home market rise. But that is highly unrealistic. Don’t forget the people “driving Brexit” are free marketeers. They are against “protectionism” and in favour of allowing the consumer unhindered access to the cheapest products, wherever they are built. It’s possible the UK would “mirror” the 10% WTO tariff on cars imposed by the EU after Brexit but that would not be sufficient to force Vauxhall (for example) to set up a duplicate production line for Corsa in the UK. It’s simply cheaper to build them all in Spain as now in huge volumes and pay the tariff on the approx. 20% of production destined for the UK market (That’s where they differ from the Japanese producing in the UK – who would be looking at that pain on approx. 60% of output). Of course much higher tariffs, as the UK applied in the distant past (33% in the 1950s), would create a kind of siege economy where Ford, Vauxhall etc. would be forced to produce here if they wanted to sell here. But that’s not going to happen. The “ideal outcome” sought by Brexiteers is zero import tariffs on cars. They admit, quite happily, this will lead to a “diminishing” of what they call the “volume car industry” in the UK. That has been set out in black and white in the publications of “Economists for Brexit” who are the “gurus” of the hard Brexit camp.

      • Agree with Chris Cowan’s point. I presume also that as well as screwing up JIT we’ll cripple what manufacturing we have in the U.K. by making our exports 10% dearer overnight. Other manufacturing countries will surely have the upper hand as they’ll be able to sell in the EU market for less than we can but will know we will have limited options for purchasing tariff-free cars so will have limited incentive to soften the blow by reducing their profit margins on cars sold in the U.K.

        One other thing – we seriously registered 2.5m cars in 2017? One new car for every 26 people? I’ll probably get shot down here but that’s insanely unsustainable. Brexit has to be the worst way to lower vehicle production – cars are expensive to develop so if we’re to keep any car industry it makes sense that it is an international effort – but I think we are registering way too many new cars.

        • …. and still there is widespread determination to not see the true picture. Wood and Trees scenario.

          EVERY one of the alien owned and controlled Trojan Horse outfits here which some describe laughably as the UK Car Industry would love to completely move elsewhere and still take advantage of the fatter margins UK car consumers are prepared to pay for their products in the “mugs” UK.

          The above is simply sound fatter profit business sense … Having traded internationally both before and after the Common Market I voted for. Whatever happened to that?…. NOT the all consuming Monster the Union of Europe has evolved into with the “Get UK” stance of that parasitic shower in Brussels ALWAYS on harmful red alert.

          There’s a reason a long line of UK Prime Ministers have returned from Brussels with zilch!

          Swindon has been running at a hugely reduced capacity for about ten years now. About half of what it once produced.

          There’s sound reasons why France, Italy and of course Germany etc still have their own indigenous car Industry unlike a mug nation who needs no introduction.

          UK car consumers bought foreign not simply because they believed the products were better, they were not, but as a way of giving those lazy bar steward Red Robbos up up Longbridge, Cowley and elsewhere a lesson as they do not deserve a well paid job. I did not make that up… folks told me why they preferred to buy foreign. To get the lazy Red Robbos. Not only work colleagues told me that when I asked why they bought a Renault or VW, friends and even relatives. This was before BMW, Auto Union and Mercedes seriously entered the volume sector big time and successfully. Even my own younger brother and Father bought foreign where previously they bought British.

          Thatcher and her team of worst form of quick-fix Torys used the massively funded Trojan Horse inducements as a way of dealing with the “Red Robbo” Union problems.

          I have always bought British new and mostly used. Never had cause to regret that. My employer provided me with a company car voted COTY ( Car of the Year ) back in the 1980s. It was rubbish. But hey! It’s not built by lazy sods up at Longbridge so must be superior. WRONG in spades. I would have preferred an Allegro which I also had as company car. Got images of them all somewhere.

          I am sadly coming to the conclusion that in the evermore land of the self-inflicted, as many of our Commercial Competitors saw years ago, then took full advantage believing our fate is not only assured, but deserved. It is up to everyone here in the UK to prove them WRONG in spades.

          Trouble is, is there sufficient quantities of the “Right Stuff” available to get the job done?

          In closing during those past four decades, I have long lost count of the times I have given lifts to folks in my “Inferior” British cars who are obviously impressed with my cars. They never gave any of them a second thought when the time came to buy their next far… Foreign is best brainwashing.

          Here I include my friendly “Always buys German” neighbour who was impressed when I gave him a lift in my MG ZT Turbo about four years ago. He even said so! Despite the car being ten years old then! Brainwashing evidence… he’s still convinced the reason my MG ZS is so reliable is because of its HONDA engine… Brainwashing at its finest!

          It’s many years since he told me whilst looking down his nose at my chosen means of getting about: “You cannot beat German engineering and reliability John”. Not since his car, one of Stuttgart’s finest, failed big time leaving him stranded on the hard shoulder of the M5 with a burnt out engine. He did not tell me that, his son did. However, later he told me the cost of repairs… More than I paid new on the road for my “they all do that” K-Series MG ZS … yes, the one with the Honda engine which is why he is convinced mine has not done “that”… 😉

          I could relate numerous other stories like that to support my conviction that the average UK car consumer has been brainwashed by our prejudicial self-inflicted meeejah which is clearly still ongoing. Particularly by that over rewarded shower in the Guaranteed Revenue stream broadcasting organ formerly known as the BRITISH Broadcasting Corporation.. However, just one more…

          “It must be a Honda engine John, its so powerful and reliable”. That engine being a T-series Turbocharged with the big letters R O V E R large across the Spark Plug covers.

          Soichiro Honda would be spinning in his grave at about 25,000 rpm like his GP Bikes did back in the 1960s at the thought that anyone would put their name on one of “his” engines. Brainwashing at its finest.

          There was a time when pedant me would contact any seller erroneously and falsely describing his Rover as having the reliable and powerful Honda engine… yes, even in his K-Series engine car on sale. Gave up as spent too much time doing that there were so many. Not least because some sellers became really nasty and abusive when their erroneously false description was pointed out to them. Brainwashing at its finest.

          • Chris W,

            I was trained as a computer systems analyst in the late 70s-early 80s. Mainframe number crunching stuff. Decided Computers were not for me and set up my own business which I ran for about a dozen years. Working from home a real side benefit being I was able to see my then two very young sons grow up. Something not all fathers are able to do for numerous reasons.

            A work colleague far more clued up than I saw a used computer, screen and keyboard locally for about a hundred quid. That was in the late 1990s … I think the earliest I posted on any on-line web-site was in 1997 on that used set up… the first I owned. Previously, I used his computer to post stuff earlier than that.

            I have mainly used just one user name on car sites for about a quarter of a century now.

            Now for something completely different.

            I see the poisonous Anna Soubry has slung her hook! Good riddance. She really does believe she knows better than those many folks who voted for her and how they voted on 23rd June 2016.

            … and another thing.

            Dyson is doing what is best for his organisation’s longer term well being to survive under current anti-UK manufacturing conditions particularly where the EU mainland influence is concerned.

            Back in the 1970-80s my daily work commute took me past the then greenfield site near Swindon which is now occupied by the Honda Motor Company of Japan. As with any foreign owned and controlled set up here, even all those with huge taxpayer inducements, it could only ever be a matter of time before they up-sticks completely and leave. Lost count of the times I’ve written that over the past two decades. To their credit, Honda even marked our cards to that effect well over a decade ago.

            Similarly the day BMW picked up the massively asset rich then Rover Group for peanuts, I argued with work colleagues that it would all end in tears. Colleagues considered it a master stroke and the Bavarian outfit will sort out those lazy barstewards up ay Longbridge and elsewhere. I nearly came to blows with one guy who really was determined to show me the error of my judgement. Again I’m on record in the 1990s of writing that on-line in more than a few occasions. “End in tears” and it came to pass. The asset strippers soon showed their true colours, even bad mouth the 75 at the launch in what was it, 1998?

            How long is this Nation going to allow itself to be taken as Mugs? Sick of it! Those we entrust to this Nation’s longer term well being, be they in Westminster or in Finance, are clearly not fit for purpose.

            The VAG and others Diesel fiasco was a surprise to millions, particularly our “we are ever so clever” meejah.. Again nearly twenty years ago I wrote all those who are keen to be seen doing the right “Green Thing” legilation without questioning the views of so called experts should be made to stand behind their diesels during the emissions part of the MoT test process taking deep breaths. Then when the coughing stops and the thick-fog of black stuff clears, ask themselves how the hell any ever pass that part of the MoT test. They do and we now know why since the Diesel Good, Petrol Bad bovine excrement hit the fans…

            This standing for the three-card-trick has to stop. Neither May or Corbyn have sufficient “right stuff” to rectify the errors of the past decades, only the people can do that. No Government of any complexion will do that either. Only if the British Nation still have the necessary as was often the needful case proven in the past. Now retired, I have Commercial/BBC 24/7365 News running on almost continuously. I should stop doing that. It is so very depressing how these know-all know-nowts are in permanent emphasize the negative, never the positive mode.

            Rocket Science it aint but it is to some, particularly those many still avidly determined to get so many important things … wrong..

            Maybe as some say we are doomed and set for continuing decline. Onlookers outside observe and believe that is both assured and deserved. I hope they are wrong.

            Looking on the bright side a fabulous sunny day today. Apart from that, everything in the garden is lovely … Love this time of year.

  3. Re: Farnsworth…

    Hand me some of that powdered opal & what all..

    What we’re seeing here is the “retard ratio” in full effect. According to the US military a full 16-18% of the population is too dumb to be trained to be a functional military asset, yet everywhere that same group of imbeciles is given a vote… And then you get Brexiteers.

    But that’s not the entire story – on top of that you have the only growing market being China and then Musk and the dribbling electric car sociopaths (and for the millionth time, electric cars aren’t bloody “green” – they are green in the same way as trying to stroke off a wild Megalania could be considered a “good idea”.

    If I can read a history book and understand how monumentally bad UK industry has actually always been – other people can, and summarise it in a memo, and it looks like that memo just landed on the Nissan CEOs desk…

    • “ALWAYS BEEN ” Says Jemma who has clearly brainwashed from reading the wrong books. .

      I bet you are one of the great kow-it-all unwashed who believe that Hamilton’s F1 WDC winning car bearing the three-pointed-star was designed and built in Stuttgart not in the badlands of the UK Midlands…. the land of the Shoemakers. Following ROSS BRAWN and JENSON BUTTON’s 2009 F1 WCC and WDC Successes the whole sheebang was bought by the German Manufacturer Mercedes-Benz.

      Our German competitors and financiers saw the benefit of buying British Manufacturing, unlike you and the authors of the books you chose to read, who wrongly accuse manufacturing where in reality it is the British Financiers who are clearly “monumentally bad” at seeing an excellent opportunity to invest in UK Manufacturing. That is simply one example. There are many, many others.

      Jemma is typical of the “I’m cleverer than you” clueless mindset. Far too widespread and prevalent in the increasingly failing UK. No bluddy wonder and no doubt she’s already labelled me as some variation of her “retard ratio”. How many times have the Jemmas and those with the same narrow focus and selfish me, me and me mindset lost their job, or, worse, had their career exported out of the UK often to the EU Mainland as a clear cut result of the UK’s membership of the so called Union of Europe and foreign ownership and control of far too much of this Nation’s depleted assets?

      Any bluddy wonder. I’d bet a nice few quid Jemma believes those we entrust this Nation’s longer term well being every few years or so are doing a splendid job so long as they undermine the will of the majority who do care and with good reason so voted O U T!

      Not just Europe, the rest of the World now see the UK as a Nation with easy meat Mugs in control and take full advantage accordingly at every level and in every direction. The History books one day will chronicle that. All far too bluddy late.

      • Did Merc, BMW, Tata et al BUY the British car industry, or did we SELL it, like we sell off everything to make a quick buck?*

        *for baby boomers to make a quick buck. The next generation is not important..

        • For everyone buyer there has to be a seller. That simple fact is lost on those who (rightly) condemn(ed) slave trading – anywhere in the world.

        • Maybe Lew is not old enough to remember the German headlines back in the 1970s. Then BMW, VW, Auto-Union ( AUDI-VAG) and other manufacturers in Germany were in deep financial doo-dah. The German people did not sell off those cash struck assets spiv-like cheap for stripping, but Government and their people knuckled down and supported their indigenous at every effective level and in every possible effective direction.

          No quick-fix sell off to solve their acute “Union” problems at that time to alien asset strippers or allowed foreign manufacturers to set up Trojan Horse Factories with huge amounts of UK Taxpayers hard to come by ( which some folks confuse as Government money ) “Invested” in alien control and foreign ownership.

          Spot the difference if you can. It’s what we allow to happen in the land of the self-inflicted. Give you a million guess which one that was but, unless you have not been paying attention, only one guess should be required.

          Some of us have been banging the “Not fit for purpose” drum about those we entrust to the Nation’s longer term well being every few years for decades. Deaf ears and stony ground and all that.

          More recently, those not fit form purpose eager to be seen to be doing the “Right Green Thing” actioned the Diesel Good, Petrol Bad” expert opinion mainly from the EU mainland without question. I along with many others banged “They’re measuring the wrong stuff with the wrong parameters” for yonks. Nothing done.

          That’s why the EU and some others form queues to take advantage of the Nation of Mugs.

          It must stop. On June 23rd 2016 that “Must Stop” message was sent loud and clear to those cushioned against reality types who will never be harmed in thgeir jobs for life environment unlike millions of folks who most of that Westminster and Meejah shower less than covderty regard as ignorant plebs who know no better.


          Yes, it will gewt worse before it will get better. No quick-fixes will fix it, only time and corect decision making with the much longer term in mind.

          The rub is, has the UK population now closing on 70 million ( ignore “official” brainwashing figures ) being diluted to the extent that sufficient quantities of the right stuff is available to make it happen now or indeed, in the future.

          • ‘The rub is, has the UK population now closing on 70 million ( ignore “official” brainwashing figures ) being diluted to the extent that sufficient quantities of the right stuff is available to make it happen now or indeed, in the future.’

            What on earth is that supposed to mean?

      • I voted out you wally. Then I happened to read one of the most respected historians on the real story of British manufacturing dominance. Talk about shock.
        We were stubborn crap from practically day one. Everyone else advanced we didn’t – even through the 1880-1900 period we were getting left behind – the only thing that kept us on top was the empire and that was a toilet-tissue tiger.
        A particular high point is a coal strike in 1941 because the guys hated the tea lady!
        How many times have we snatched defeat from the jaws of success – we had leads in virtually every industry bar possibly PC type computing – up to and including space research and travel – and through a combination of bad luck (some) and general bolshie gormlessness (much more) we’re reduced in most cases to assembling stuff for other countries companies.
        It’s entirely possible to benefit from the EU – everyone else has (bar possibly Greece). Do what France does – do what you agree with and take the money – ignore everything you don’t like and do what you want instead.
        I’d also suggest that you go look up the official financial accounts for the EU – they make interesting reading – or they would if they existed.
        But it’s not about Brexit – no one really gives a toss – it’s just a platinum plated excuse for anyone to get out of the UK after they’ve got the incentives years ago to even come here. If we’re still in the EU and companies want out they need an honest reason – and to probably pay off the govt. Now all they have to do is invoke Brexit and off they go. It’s like shooting ourselves in the foot with the deathstar superlaser.

        As to the retard ratio. It is unfortunately real, and the problem is serious as regards politics and everything else. If you have a two party system and the retard option is that political party that historically can be expected to do the electorate the most harm – then you have a 16-18% bias (at least) toward that option. It is generally agreed in the UK and US that these choices (currently) are Tory and Republican. We should therefore expect to see a higher number of governments from these groups than for the other choices, if not the ratio should be roughly equal on probability. We see the first result, not a generally equal balance. Labour or the Democrats get in when either a) even the most gormless have been driven to loathe their usual choice -or- b) the Tory or Republican does something stupid like splitting the vote.
        On top of that the more of a dim glow the person is the more likely to do what they’re told – so if an 84 is told – vote – generally they’ll vote. Someone who is highly educated and intelligent will examine the issues in their mind, value the procedure in their minds, realise its entirely meaningless either way and go do what they were going to do anyway. So in that way you get a magnification of the retard ratio because those inclined to counter that choice are doing something else.
        Now even after all that in general it really does not matter in the case of general UK politics – because all the politicians are lying two faced toe rags anyway who had no intention of doing what they promised and things just go on as crappily as before.
        However it *does* matter with the EU because it has the potential to change the entire world dynamic – a lot more than people realise.

        • Psssst! Wally here. You voted OUT. Good for you. Do you still feel strongly to vote OUT again?

          There’s a lot to admire in your lengthy post. What I believe it boils down to is that your “lying two faced toe rags” have been clearly demonstrating for decades now they are simply not fit for purpose where the longer term well-being of the nation is involved. It’s been all about quick-fix rather than the longer term for far too long. Now that is coming home to roost in spades. The only surprising thing being it has taken so long to reach this important stage. On 23rd June 2016 you, I and millions of others sent a clear signal to those “toe rags” who really believe they know better that things need to change. In their cushioned against reality environment the EU aint broke so why fix it. It aint broke for them. It is badly broken and has been for millions of others who have suffered from the harsher aspects of our membership of the so called Union of Europe over the past four decades. I bet some who voted IN also suffered directly without even realising it because of the covert harmful aspects of that parasitic Union the “toe rags” were keen to hide. A Union of Europe was NOT what I voted for back in the 1970s. Not the parasitical to the UK Monster it has evolved into over the past decades.

          The poisonous types like Anna Soubry in the Blue Corner and Chukka Amuna in the Red Corner really do believe they know better in their cushioned against reality Westminster bubble.

          No Government of any colour will make our severance of that parasitical umbilical cord from UK taxpayers to the Brussels parasite work. Only the people can do that. It will never be a QUICK-FIX…. it will need time. Lots of it.

          Back on the Oxymoron title of this thread. Despite spokesmen for the HONDA Motor Company of JAPAN confirming that our severance from the EU parasite is not the reason for their up-sticks and leave Swindon decision, something they warned was always possible over ten years ago, there are still some who will make that false connection.

          Note “of Japan”… Not UK. Foreign ownership and control means they, not the UK will make the big final decisions and no amount of Taxpayers money continuing to be thrown down those respective money pits will make them change their minds if it is NOT in their interest.

          It’s up to the UK people to make it better. It can never be a quick-fix.

          Your closing “a lot more than people realise” sentence is spot on. Change is coming and will increase. We must be in the spearhead of those changes otherwise will will continue to be left struggling. June 23rd 2016 was simply the start of the process. It is ongoing and long term.

        • Jemma – we did lead in PC-type computing in the 80s. British designed and manufactured Acorns in the late 80s in particular were comfortably more capable than similarly-priced IBMs and Apples. But people ridicule them out of hand. Having driven a couple of British cars from the 80s I can understand why they were considered to be badly made and unreliable (although fun to drive). I was fully signed up to Acorn, though, and found it baffling why anyone in their right minds would prefer a plodding PC running Windows 3.1. Sadly, people seem to get a greater kick out of dissing our home-grown IT industry than taking pride in it. Arguably worse is that people were unaware that Acorn spawned ARM which went on to utterly dominate the mobile market. In terms of units manufactured, ARM-designed processors outnumber Intel by orders of magnitued but I bet more Brits have heard of Intel than ARM. ARM was still British-owned until 2016 – the absolute jewel of British high-tech industry which was snapped up by Softbank when the pound plummeted in 2016 (a sale touted by the Tory government – never a party to look beyond the short term – as some kind of sick example that Britain was still worth investing in). It’s now at risk of being sold to Nvidia, a sale which would comprehensively undermine its sales model and legitimacy.

          • Did the Acorns really gain much traction in businesses compared to PCs?

            They were fine for use in schools as they were much more user-friendly, but within a few years even home users wanted large hard drives & internet access so they lost their niche.

          • Hi richardpd, the point I was trying to make wasn’t so much to do with their commercial success but their capability. The computer market is arguably more complex than the car market as the hardware itself is only part of a purchasing decision – however, class-leading hardware was designed and manufactured in the UK and continues to be designed in the UK, something I feel a lot of people aren’t aware of. Perhaps its association with education hindered as much as helped Acorn – an assumption that their products were basically toys (so to speak). Hindsight is a great thing but look how much the iPhone has influenced the market and made computing accessible. Perhaps Acorn didn’t shout loudly enough that their computers had the scope to do that too given their user-friendliness. Perhaps they just had too narrow a window of time to try. Like you say, by the time multimedia and the internet were driving PC sales, Acorn had lost both their performance edge and the resources to keep up.

  4. The needs of the armed forces have changed since I was in (1958-1964), and the basic “give a man a gun, tell him to point it at the enemy and pull the trigger” has been long gone. Soldiers, etc need now to have much higher levels of intelligence, to operate often complicated equipment.

    As for “, yet everywhere that same group of imbeciles is given a vote… And then you get Brexiteers”, logically the converse is true “and then you get Remainers”. As for an intelligence test to vote, I agree. The more intelligence the more votes a person has. But then look at our greedy captains of industry.

    • More good points well made. For my sins I was deployed by an outside agency to observe modern UK forces “in the field” of action with the problems faced and how to operate modern kit under stressful conditions. That was years ago, “modern kit” it is more extreme now no doubt. There’s a lot more involved than simple point and shoot.

      I’d bet a month’s salary that the majority of the Jemmas of this World would not make it to first base. It would simply be beyond their ken…. INIT. :rolleyes:

  5. There isn’t a Nissan CEO with a desk at present ! You may not have noticed, but he’s languishing in a Far eastern prison

    Also, your hyperbole about British Industry, although highly amusing, is also wrong

    PS As , presumably , one of the 16-18% uneducated imbeciles, may I enquire what a wild Megalania is ?

    • @ CS

      Megalania – or Varanus Priscus. The Komodo dragons (much) bigger brother. Estimates vary but length is about 20ft and weight between 400-600kg (you can have skinny varanids (Perentie) and powerfully built varanids (v.komodoensis) – they’re similar sizes on average but the Komodo is much heavier).
      There’s a good chance it carried venom too – but to know the teeth would need examination – if they have channels formed in them then they probably do.

      • I’m not sure where Megalania – or Varanus Priscus came into any discussion, but the Perentie was the Australian army’s own vehicle based on the Land Rover Defender, in 4 x 4 and 6 x 6 versions – and very successful. They have come to the end of their service lives, and there is now no British vehicle to be adapted to Aussie needs.

  6. Actually I believe not that many Japanese cars or motorbikes are actually manufactured in Japan any more, due to the high costs of production (eg an overvalued currency). I guess that might change though with Brexit.

    • Good point well made Adrian,

      Few years ago I fitted an MG6 engine to my MG ZT-T 1.8T. Yes, the Chinese version of the original Rover K-Series Design. I knew the car it came from as it was from one of my sons’ friend’s MG6 which unfortunately was rolled resulting in a “Write Off”. At first glance the Unit looked identical to any other 1.8 K-Series.

      Fitting the MG6 Engine meant closer inspection of it for any possible mix and match compatibility issues of which there were a few minor ones easily overcome. This gave the opportunity to observe the revealed numerous “improvements” the Chinese owners of the MG Marque were able to do. Probably the most effective being the method of casting the major engine components. Not gravity cast but pressure cast apparently resulting in more strength. Yes, numerous improvements were noted including an additional Exhaust Manifold Stud for extra strength on an otherwise identical casting. Nothing beyond the capabilities of the folks up at Longbridge could not do if they were allowed to by those in control. There’s the rub! Allowed to do.

      Unfortunately for our asset stripped remnant indigenous Motor Industry, still confusing for many who still believe we have a UK Car Industry as evidence here by some contributors, those in ownership and or control played a blinder.

      Those in ownership or control included a clueless Government concerned only on quik-fix spiv-like cheap sell offs of the family silver with “Get the Unions” stances, an uncaring Aerospace Industry who had their own deep-doo-dah financial issues to contend with as a serious diversion, and a Bavarian asset stripping outfit who were eagerly allowed to pick up the massively asset rich then Rover Group…. for peanuts. Who soon after started asset stripping by selling off JLR for a total exceeding what they had paid for the whole Rover Group!

      OK, I’ve gone off on one of my several “tangerines” so back to your original point Adrian.

      That MG6 Engine came complete with several auxiliary components such as “fly by wire” Throttle Body Inlet Manifold and Turbocharger. The latter was interesting. It carried a Mitsubishi logo and the Legend “Made in Korea”. So we have a Japanese manufacturer, sub contracting building Turbochargers to nearby Korea who in turn supplied the complete assembly to the nearby Chinese manufacturer who now own the former UK Marque MG.

      “How about that”… as they sometimes say at North American Baseball TV coverage reviews of play.

      • I’d love to hear more about the MG6 transplant for sure. But referring to the improvements made by the Chinese, I had heard that the second generation K series was all but ready by the still profitable engines division of MGR. I have no doubt that the Chinese did make their own mods, but is there anyone out there who can verify that development state in 2004?

      • I’ve worked with quite a few of the ex-BL lot. “Allowed to do so” etc. doesn’t come into it. Think “wishing” to do so. You can take the horse to the water but you can’t make him drink it.

        The work shyness is quite frankly unbelievable, and that’s one reason why JLR’s quality (and previously BL’s) is now suffering. There are only so many times one can say “it’ll cost too much to implement that”. It didn’t stop Toyota or BMW from doing so.

        That comes from people who have worked across all car companies as well.

        • “Work shyness” seems endemic in many British workplaces. One worker should not work harder than the others for fear of showing what can be done. I have never worked on a piece rate job, but have been told more than once that someone (the union shop steward?) decides how many tasks a minute or hour, etc should be completed, and anyone repeatedly completing more is liable to being given a goosd talking to, taken off the job, black-listed, or even suffering physical abuse. The idea that working harder makes the job more secure because it increases the output and thus the profitability – a dirty word in the UK – of the company never crosses anyone’s mind. “Do as little as possible for a long as possible for as much as possible” being the driving attitude. In a vehicle assembly plant, who sets the track speed?

    • Indeed Adrian. Also most cheaper branded Japanese cameras are made in China or Malaysia with the more expensive top spec ones coming from Japan. So you can’t buy genuine Japanese either. Some Leica (German) cameras are the same as the Japanese Panasonic Lumix brand ones

    • Ahah … The “Lemon” was a no cost random optional extra supplied by all car manufacturers.

      No such thing as a really bad car. Vastly outnumbered by bad users of cars but, more often than not the poor car gets the blame anyway. AA/RAC call out stats confirm this time and again.

  7. Chris Cowin is right.
    The British Motor Industry is staring disaster in the face thanks to xenophobes who think there are are to many foreigners here and want them deported.
    Brexiteers are like Corbynistas, selling the idea of gain for no pain.
    Well now the pain that were told was the mythical project fear has started and the booming economy that attracted the migrant workers is about to disappear as industry reduces its involvement in the UK.
    The British are a hypocritical nation. We want our country back, but want to drive German cars. We want a portion of the country to work for next to nothing in order to provide cheap services, but resent the migrant labour that contributes towards this. We continue to patronise the likes of Amazon, despite knowing that they pay a pittance in tax, yet complain about the underfunding of public services.
    After four decades of market led economics it still has not sunk in that Britain needs to sell it’s wares abroad to pay it’s way.
    After the Brexit vote, the British people have only themselves to blame for the inevitable economic catastrophe. Brothers and sisters, we are looking at disaster in the face.

    • Hah! Typical blind mindset distortion.

      I’d bet that a much higher proportion of so called Remainers buy more German automotive product than those who voted O U T have done. Thanks to those “I’m alright Jacks and Ginas” which infest the remainer camps and get far more airtime on TV and radio to bang their FAKE news drums, I can no longer buy a British made MG or Rover. Those marque names are now in alien control and ownership. Sold off dirt cheaply by those in past Remainer camps which most Torys, including Prime Minister May have always occupied.

      The core of the trouble being the EU aingt broke for them, so why fix it”. Trouble is, it IS broke for the rest of us. PM David Cameron was cock sure that most “sensible” folks would vote remain otherwise there would never have been a Referendum. Most sensible folks voted O U T. Their decision based on real experiences from the harsher side of Britain’s EU membership. Hardship every one of those we entrust our Nation’s longer term well being never have to experience. Thus cocooned in their cushioned against reality environment, they drag their feet, plot and delay in the hope that somehow this Nation will not sever that parasitical umbilical cord from UK Taxpayers ( not Government ) sucking our hard to come by for billions and set for regular increases.

      Moving swiftly on, in other news.

      More negative excrement hitting the NISSAN news fan today. It was NOT £60 million under the counter inducements to NISSAN, that was FAKE News apparently. The more accurate figure now reported is actually 33% higher than that. £80 million!

      I also live in hope that someone involved with the AirBus proposed move, spills the bean thereto. Like most UK stuff in alien control, they want to shift manufacturing to the EU Mainland which has been ongoing for decades now. So called BREXIT is simply an ideal opportunity to blame when introducing their longstanding covert plans.

      This Nation used to build good stuff in factories run and owned by ourselves. Where did it all go right.

      • To answer your last point the rest of the world (mostly in the far east) upped their games just as we started going backwards, thanks to clueless management assuming the Commonwealth countries would keep buying British even when the Japanese we starting to sell well in 2nd world markets, & unions getting ever more militant & assuming the government would always bail the company out even when the Japanese were perfecting just in time & showing them up the be overpaied work-shy slobs in comparison.

  8. It will be tricky in the short term but in the long term we will be fine.

    What would be really helpful is if people in the UK started making more informed purchases, thinking about where stuff is made and by whom.

    Individual buying habits will have the biggest influence on how well we survive Brexit. That goes for the car industry too.

    And lastly, can Remain and Leave voters stop hurling childish insults at each other please? It’s getting ridiculous, it’s unintelligent and unhelpful. We’re leaving, decision made, so let’s expend the energy on making sure we succeed instead of beating each other up.

    • John – I am all for encouraging people to “buy British”. The risk is that (if the Japanese no longer see sense in manufacturing in the UK) then the list of “British built” cars one can buy will be very short. One must remember that most Japanese-brand production in the UK is destined for the EU market. UK demand alone would not be sufficient to support their UK plants.
      We already live in a world where it is impossible to buy a British-built budget 3 door hatchback (of the Corsa/Fiesta type) – however patriotic you feel. There’s the Mini (but that’s expensive) or you are forced to buy foreign.
      In the absence of Nissan, Toyota and Honda that predicament would apply to all segments of the car market except those served by Jaguar Land Rover, BMW Mini and the specialists.

      Turning to you point about “we’re leaving”. I agree. It’s important we make the best of it. But making the best of it (IMO) includes ensuring we agree a good deal with the EU which preserves frictionless access to the EU market for car plants located in the UK and doesn’t stick a spanner in the works of their Just in Time production. That “opinion” piece we are commenting below (which in fact I first wrote simply as a comment on an article by Keith) was not intended to argue against Brexit as such – but against the “scorched earth” No Deal Brexit we are now being threatened with.

      • It will depend on whether the EU are prepared to be flexible in giving us a deal that Parliament are happy with. The evidence to date suggests they’re not. So no-deal may be the only option, despite the best efforts of our politicians.

        You would hope the EU would be less recalcitrant. Let’s hope they give more flexibility.

        • The main thing is to make sure export markets are “Buying British” especially as 80% of cars made by Nissan here go for export.

          I can live with a soft Brexit, but the government has wasted over 2 years pandering to hard line brexiteers rather than trying to get a deal that works for everyone, even if you need to upset a small minority.

  9. John H WROTE:~

    “You would hope the EU would be less recalcitrant. Let’s hope they give more flexibility.”

    Whilst I agree largely with the content of your admirable contributions, the hope in your closing sentence is forlorn.

    You do not need to be a Sir David Attenborough to understand that in all Nature, parasites NEVER make it easy for a sustaining host to go free. It is in the interests of the Brussels parasite to make that FREEDOM as difficult or impossible to secure. Despite little evidence of it Westminster, there is a growing groundswell of opinion in the country as a whole leaning towards a No Deal or more dramatically, as Westminster would have it, Crashing Out of the EU parasite. Certainly that will mean problems as would any deal of severance but, the country as a whole is beginning to appreciate that could be the only course of action to secure a better well being environment for the Nation as a whole. It will be a slow process nad the Nation must work patiently with the focus on the longer term, not more pathetic Quick-Fixes which look god next week but have been massively harmful in the longer.

    I prefer to buy British and it is encouraging to see the Union flag and Produce of the Uk now widespread on many items not just on the Supermarket shelves, but even mentioning things with that slant such as the recent Vauxhall TV adverts stressing something on the lines of “Making cars in the UK since 1903”.

    The last new car I bought was in 2003 which I still have and has been very reliable. It’s an MG ZS 120 with the “They all do that” K-Series engine. Only after sixteen years of ownership, it has yet to do that as has the previous K-Series new car I bought in 1993 still in family care and ownership. My friendly always buys German neighbour is convinced the reason my MGs and Rovers are so reliable is because of their … wait for it “Honda Engines”. Such is the widespread ignorance within UK car consumer groups due to UK’s MSM ( Main Stream Media ) talking upo foreign product and always reporting just about anything UK Indigenous Industry related always with a negative slant. Witness Clarkson’s incessant pro=German Automotive slants in programme content and his rodent sidekick’s outburst on BBC’s Top Gear :~ “MGFs ARE RUBBISH”… Cue … “These folks are professionals John and obviously know what they are on about”… Yeah right. Typical FAKE NEWS of our MSM’s less than covert Brainwashing.

    The “Buy British” message is again being resurrected and becoming ever more widespread and that has to be a good thing. Even my local wealthy Farmer is spreading the good word with a large sign in the back of his car “SUPPORT BRITISH FARMERS”. Trouble is, that sign was in the rear screen of his new BMW… Typical.

    I’ll close with a cracking experience with a single exchange with my friendly car enthusiast always buys German neighbour. For years he would take every opportunity to look down his nose at my UK built choice of means of getting about. Poking fun and telling me “You cannot beat German Engineering and reliability John” and he really meant that. Did tend to get on one’s nerves. However, he NEVER says that to me now, not since his marvellous uber-expensive Stuttgart Product burnt its engine out leaving him stranded on the hard shoulder of the nearby M5. Later he told me how much it cost to repair. More than I paid for my new MG ZS 120 … on the road. You know, the one with the Honda Engine.

    Hands up all those who think I make this stuff up… Hmmm that many. In reality, you couldnot make these things up. Reality is a hard task master and very steep learning curve for some folks.

    Attending a Quiz Night a few years ago, he and two other friends in my MG ZT 1.8T. Always buys German alongside me in the passenger seat. He was visibly impressed with the ten year old MG ZT and said so. Yet, when the time came to buy a new car when these cars were in the Rover Dealership showrooms, a visit there was nowhere on his new car shopping list. Listening to work colleagues, relatives and others over the years that visit was never on their shopping list either.

    Meejah Brainwashing works.

    • Ah yes – the Vauxhall adverts which bang the patriotic drum, while selling imports – because every single Vauxhall passenger car sold in the UK, with the exception of some Astras (and that’s fading fast) are imported as are many of the vans.
      I’m particularly amused by the advert for the small Vauxhall Corsa Combo van which says “Cometh the hour, cometh the van” . Every time I see that I feel like scrawling “…from Spain” at the end of the slogan : )
      They’re a pretty cynical bunch (and I should know as I used to work with them : )

      • Me too Chris that’s why I highlighted it. Folks here still insist the UK has a Car Industry and they are correct of course. It’s not far away from me tucked away close to the beautiful Malvern Hills. As the late Soichiro Honda once said, one day there will only be four major automotive manufacturers. Oh and Morgan…

        The average clueless car user consumer really does not appreciate the true situation when they purchase a new car. Like the old woman down the road who curses the good folks of Dagenham because her Fiesta has been a load of trouble. She was genuinely shocked when I told her her Ford was made … in Spain.

        When I bought my new MG back in 1983, there was a vociferous woman in the Showroom mouthing off about those lazy so and sos up at Longbridge. Her accent and demeanour was clearly that of a privileged background. I suspect she had never done a day’s work in her life. She was politely asked to leave. Apparently she wanted to order a Rover of a certain specification only to be told she would have to wait about three months for such a car to be built from scratch. As most folks should know, with such a range of options there are millions of combinations and her car was not already made and tucked away in the factory. Clueless and the sad thing is there are many like that. They are their own worst enemy in the land of the clueless self-inflicted. OK, that’s two stories involving females but I could outline many such stories involving males.

        Still why should me, me and me give a damn. I’m alright… I’m off to join the queues to pay over the odds for a nice new German car. GThat will sustain a few jobs… In the EU Mainland. My enthusiastic always buys German assures me it’s the best policy. I could buy a new car tomorrow but, I do not fancy anything from the North East, Derbyshire, Swindon or even the EU Mainland. So the last new car I bought made in England is likely to be the very last new car I’ll ever buy. I shall simply have to creep about in my old Rovers and MGs. OK, I’ll hold my hands up, I lied about the …. creeping about bit … 😉 Most of my cars are Turbocharged Petrol powered. That turbo boost can be addictive… and then the fuel consumption display shows 19.7 mpg. Yikes… Maybe computer speaketh with forked tongue… Computer says no scenario. However, not driven for economy and in cold wintry conditions. I am happy with that. On a long steady run at Motorway speeds mid-30s mpg is the norm, even when towing.

        If I ever buy another new MG as I have had the pleasure of doing several times in the past, it will be made in the Far East. Very far east of Cowley, Abingdon or even Longbridge.

        However, I have to hold my hands up again, one of my MG ZTs actually has a Chinese MG6 engine transplant so …. how about that.

    • I actually agree MGJohn and really, I know the EU will not compromise and that logically, no deal is the only way forward.

      I’m keen to be fair and diplomatic about it though – I think if the EU were prepared to come to a suitable arrangement that would be better than no deal. But they are not a nice organisation and they won’t. So we should leave with no deal and make it work.

      • If ever there had been any doubt about it , Donald Runt and that Irish buffoon have now sealed the fate of any deal which might have been done. If ever there was an illustration of why it is right to leave this malign – and almost certainly failing – club, Runt’s pronouncement today is the perfect example. There are unquestionably difficult times ahead for all of us , but I suspect that the most worried faces in Europe today will be those of the German manufacturers , particularly BMW and Mercedes , although VW group must also be wondering what the future holds . By the way , I was one of the imbeciles ( per Jemma ) who voted to leave – but I was also one who voted to join in the 1970s – go figure, as they say in Trumpland

        • How would you react if you saw somebody refer to a ‘British buffoon’?

          Sad that you have no insight into how bigoted you come across

          • Agree with you Richard. More to the point, Tusk and Varadkar (I presume it’s these two Storey is referring to) are doing precisely what we would expect them to do if the boot was on the other foot – protecting the member states’ and their own interests respectively. And think about exactly what Tusk was calling out. A gross, negligent lack of planning on the part of those champions of Brexit who led the calls for Brexit and are in positions of power. Worse, that the same people are quick to retort that it’s the ‘will of the people’ when challenged in any way – mindful, no doubt, that when something goes wrong they’ll be able to point to the electorate and say ‘well, we were only following instructions’.

            The Withdrawal Agreement as it stands – this product of an ‘inflexible EU’ – is in part a consequence of our own unwillingness to take the process seriously and engage with it properly. To take the Backstop (which seems to be the most contentious part). We are signatories to the GFA and it presently relies on the current international arrangements we have (not least on customs) blurring the border between NI and RoI to make the two as close as possible to functionally one while not breaking links between NI and GB. We’ve decided we don’t want to be part of that customs union so it’s down to us to find, demonstrate and implement an alternative. We haven’t really scoped out what that entails yet let alone managed to implement it yet so the backstop – staying in the CU – is there as a fallback. You would think under the circumstances we would have taken the initiative over this, demonstrated an understanding and demonstrated a solution before negotiating the WA. It is in our interests to put ourselves in a stronger negotiating position and no responsible country unilaterally undermines a hard fought for peace accord. Yet Raab seems to have been as unfamiliar with the GFA as he was with the importance of Dover. May has put a series of Brexiter MPs in charge of key Brexit-related roles – Davis, Fox, Johnson, Raab – and each have been hopeless. Leave MPs had the opportunity to put someone forward to pick up the batten after Cameron quit. It says a lot that they couldn’t even sustain any semblance of focus to get themselves within chance of winning that. Instead they’ve by and large gone back to their historic role of noisily demanding the unreasonable and not meaningfully contributing to the solution. There is a lot May has done since 2010 (not just 2016) that I disagree with but compared to the ERG she’s the adult in the room.

            I very much doubt the German manufacturers will be that worried. Price hikes on their cars will only be as bad as other imports into the UK and their exports to the UK while significant are a lot less than their total. Disruption to supply chains will limit the chance of the field being tilted in UK-based manufacturers’ favour and the majority of our output will attract tariffs that will make our cars uncompetitively priced overseas.

  10. Oh dear, there is a real desperation to justify support fro brexit in this article. The reality is our car industry died decades before brexit, so you should have voted on the reality as it is now. Not some fantasy reality in which BL survived. We now depend on foreign companies.

    Even if BL had survived, do you think it would be able to do without European exports and supply chain, in you fantasy alternative universe?

    I am incredible angry about brexit, as far I am concerned the older generation have voted for something monumentally stupid, which is going to hurt younger workers like myself. Brexit is going to destroy the economy, including our car industry.

    • On what figures are you basing the assumption that the “older” generation voted for Brexit? The full demographics from the actual vote are not available. The nearest was a count of over 1000 Local Government ward voting stats by the BBC, which showed a fairly even split between Remain and Leave in the late 30’s to mod 50’s age range. And that itself is not the best barometer as there are over 9000 wards in the UK.

      All the other data is from polling, which is not the same as the actual voting data.

      So what would you say to the younger voters who went with Leave?

    • Clueless right there.

      Tell that to my two thirty something sons and their fine circle of friends in their twenties and early thirties…. some of which drive Rovers and MGs including V8s. If those hard working youngsters are a true indication of the younger population across the UK, and I’ve not seen any reason to not believe that, the future is in safe hands with clear thinking young minds on making the things better for the Nation as a whole. Young agile minds not to be confused with those infantile young minds who believe it’s all about rights and benefits… Corbyn types want the voting age much lower … I wonder why… No I don’t. Yes, say after tenth birthday … sorted. You could not make this stuff up.

      Like millions of clear thinking others with their young eyes focused on the longer term, they are sick and tired of Europe taking us for Mugs and voted accordingly.

  11. I am one of the “older generation ” now, but can remember life before we joined the EEC (before it became the huge EU,) when we made plenty of cars and ships here. Yes Brexit may be difficult in the short term but one needs to remember it is also the older generation who have paid taxes in abundance over the years, so we can decide for ourselves. I’m sure the younger ones will survive… like we had to.

  12. At 76 years of age I voted for out – to regain our sovereignty and our borders. I recall being lied to about the Treaty of Rome being only a trade treaty – hence the “Economic” in EEC. I was lied to again by the Wilson government in 1975, and have seen our political life dominated by what is now the EU. I saw the end of the British motorcycle industry – nothing to do with the EEC, EC, EU. Looking online today, I saw that MK – the electric plug makers – are still making their goods IN THE UK, high quality products. Why can we not make “British” cars in the UK? My taxes paid for part of at least two generations of “government” expenditure – state schools. armed forces, police, NHS, etc. And towards the billions of pounds syphoned off and sent to other EU countries. In return we got those countries’ unemployed.

    • It looks like you’ve been stiffed, but that’s true of any leaver with less than a 6 figure income, just sheep lead by snakes.

    • ‘Why can we not make “British” cars in the UK?’ Ask James Dyson. Apparently he’s keen to develop cars. As a vocal champion of Brexit you’d think he’d be keen to make them in the UK.

      • British people will not pay for anything made in the UK because they will not pay UK labour costs. MY VW Fox (bought as a year-old demonstrator in 2008) was MADE IN BRAZIL!! The VW Golf (written off when a Polish driver failed to stop when coming out of a side road – and in another Golf!) was most likely made there as well. My Ford Escort could have been made anywhere in Europe – or elsewhere. My Humber Sceptre was, I hope, made in the UK, ditto the my two Hillman Minxes (new and old body shapes). My mother had an Austin Ten, my stepfather a soft-top pre-war Opel Cadet, then two Standard Vanguards (round boot and square boot), then a Rover 105, lastly a Honda Accord (built in Swindon?).

        • Labour costs… wossatden?

          Had an official factory tour of BMW/Oxford recently. Affectionately known by some as Stalag Cowley … Brit sense of Humour and irony … :)… We shall need that in spades to make a real success of our future.

          That factory tour was a real eyeopener. I saw NO workers labouring. All I saw ( eye sore? ) was lots and lots of big, very noisy yellow monsters bashing panels and welding stuff, assembling sub-assemblies and lots of other such like Robot automation.

          I wonder where those two thousand odd Robots were made… no I don’t.

          When it suits THEM, not US, they will be gone. To be fair to the Honda Motor Company of Japan ( not Swindon ) they honestly warned of this possibility over ten years ago on more than one occasion. It is simply good business sense and not the Rocket Science those wringing their hands would have us believe.

          Admirable honesty from Honda that a few of the others also confirmed back then although more recently, it is convenient for them now to cloud the issue ( witness alien controlled AirBus who “suddenly” decide to go ) with the UK people’s decision to sever the parasitical umbilical cord to the Brussels Monster as the only reason. Yeah 100% believable.

          Alien ownership and control of much of this Nation’s assets. Most certainly the quick-fix way to go. Who needs longer term security. Way to go. Go being the operative word.

          On June 23rd 2016 there was the first indication that the Nation was waking up to the reality of how things have progressed under forty odd years of so called Union of Europe membership.

          Those IN voters seek yet another quick-fix come March 20… It aint going to happen. It’s taken decades to reach the current state of affairs… undoing all that ongoing harmful stuff from Brussels will need time… lots of it!

          Quick-fixes are and never were the answer. As Germany, France et al have clearly demonstrated by their successful protective longer term decisions.

          At last it is now blatantly obvious that those we entrust this Nation’s well being to every 4-5 years are simply not fit for purpose. The fragmentation of the two main political parties is not a quick fix either. Only the people can fix things. If they have it in them.

  13. Brexiteers seem to think that all our vanished industries will be resurrected.
    They died because nobody wanted to buy what they manufactured, least of all the British.

    • Not heard a single high profile Brexit supporter say that.

      Please don’t generalise and label groups of people with simplistic viewpoints. It’s not helpful and just causes division and arguments.

    • This nobody bought them! I asked many of those I know why they bought foreign automotive product and it was not because our manufacturers did not make cars they wanted. They bought foreign as a way of punishing Red Robbo and all his followers who do not deserve a reasonably paid and secure job. That showed ’em and both Governments in the Red and Blue corners gave much assistance to the demise and near extinction of indigenous UK manufacturing. It suited mainly those in the Blue Corner as a way of dealing with the then increasing huge and harmful “Union Problem” of the time. A very convenient covert bi-product. Sever the Union’s lifeblood ~ employment and union dues ~ results in a weakened Union. Those lazy barstewards do not deserve a good job. Words on those lines I heard on far more than one occasion back in the 1970-80s. Target identified. Job done. Brainwashing still plays a part as I’m reminded by my always buys German neighbour who is convinced that my Rovers and MGs are reliable because of their Honda engines!

      Yes Prime Minister … make it so. 🙂

  14. Bartelbe, That is a great summation of what Brexiteers seem to think, that we can all go back to living in the past. Forget the past ,realise that the world has changed and, as a certain Honda robot said in an advert ” more forwards please”.Donald Tusk had it right Brexiteers like Nigel Farrage,Boris Johnson,Michael Gove et all had no plan whatsoever and thought the world would come running to us.Instead they have put us and our future in a right mess.

    • A majority of the voting public voted for Brexit. How many of them share the same viewpoint as a few high profile Brexit supporters is debatable. Perhaps one could consider that many may have had their own reasons for making their choice? The same would go for those of us who voted Remain, who equally shouldn’t be labelled with generalised and insulting terms like EU sympathisers, cowards, lefties or any other nasty labels.

    • Why blame ” Nigel Farrage,Boris Johnson,Michael Gove” when Farage is not even in the government, and Johnson refused to be considered as PM after Cameron. Gove can be held to account, but the cause of the two and a half year shambles is having a Remainer as PM. May has been putting obstruction after obstruction in the way of us leaving, while pretending to be getting us out.
      It has been a complete smokescreen. As I have already said, a vegan in charge of a butcher’s shop.

      • Eric,
        You don’t have to be in the government to promote Brexit.Farrage was in politics as an MEP,ironically in the European Parliament, so his promotion of Brexit was political.As was Boris as he was Foreign Secretary in the Conservative Government.Teresa May is useless as Prime Minister so I doubt she is deliberately obstructing Brexit, just making a total mess of things as usual.

    • Why blame ” Nigel Farrage,Boris Johnson,Michael Gove” when Farage is not even in the government, and Johnson refused to be considered as PM after Cameron. Gove can be held to account, but the cause of the two and a half year shambles is having a Remainer as PM. May has been putting obstruction after obstruction in the way of us leaving, while pretending to be getting us out.
      It has been a complete smokescreen. As I have already said, a vegan in charge of a butcher’s shop.

      • Nice one Eric H. There are even some within her party openly suggesting that has been her ploy all along. Then again, maybe the long drawn out ineffective delay is her genuine attempt at achieving the impossible.Trying to please everyone in the UK as well as the vast hordes of parasitic types on the EU mainland especially Brussels. Simply cannot be done. Not even a good try by our PM Theresa May. She has the toughest job and task list of any PM since WWII.

        • Not nearly as parasitic as the people over here who are still unemployed in times near full employment & only asset is a Britsh citizenship yet still want so much entitlement even though the government has been stupid enough to bankroll their lifestyle for years.

  15. Well, wow what a great healthy debate, I’m nowhere near as eloquent or informed as some of the contributors but as a Brexiteer as some might like to call me, a few things I’d like to get out there – firstly I have absolutely no problem with ‘foreign labour’ it’s absolutely necessary and good for our country and economy, bring it on / in, but in a managed way, not a free for all. Second, I’m under no illusion of resurrection of ‘old school’ British manufacturing, it was flawed, it failed, bring in the new (British) manufacturing, we can do it. Thirdly I don’t want to pay £100k plus p.p.p.a. for 750 MEPs to make decisions about the shape of my pasty, we can decide for ourselves, or £150 million p.a. to pointlessly move the EU HQ around the place (facts, look ’em up). Fourth we sell nearly half of UK made cars (getting back to automotive) outside of the EU – there’s a huge world market to exploit. Fifth there will be no ‘train smash’ cliff edge Brexit, there may be a wobble for sure but rest assured when the French can’t get their strawberries/drugs/potatoes/lambs… across the channel and they’re rotting away in Calais there will be uproar across France and other EU nations who ALL want to do business with us, if we charge them 10% import on anything they’ll do just the same and vice versa, there’s a trade deal to be done…
    Worst case, my J4 van is still going really well, I’ll nip over and pick some stuff up and I’ll even swallow the potential £6 visa fee – it was never an issue in the 70’s and no big deal now, a tiny price to pay.
    Keep the faith and check in the supermarket / garage / tv shop where your produce is from 🙂

  16. Too often Brexit is presented as an almost tribal decision, with Brexiteers in the majority. In fact we had a debate where arguments for and against Brexit were presented and a majority were persuaded by the pro-brexit arguments. In the referendum, pro-Brexit campaigners had the advantage of not having to stick to a single argument and no single cohesive vision of Brexit was presented. We could stay in the single market or in the customs union, we could have free and frictionless trade with Europe. We could send home all the undesirable EU citizens and keep the skilled workers, agricultural workers and hospitality staff and trades men we need. We would embark on upskilling the UK workforce to replace the specialists we lost. We could strike new “Buccaneering” trade deals with the rest of the world. China, India, Brazil, Russian and South Africa would start buying all of the stuff we sell (which is what exactly). Our expats will stay in Spain. Etc.
    The problem now is that systematically each of these arguments has been shown to be largely unachievable. There are of course still many who voted for Brexit that either are happy with what is happening or stick with it out of stubborn sense of loyalty. But what is totally unclear is that Brexit is and will be an economic disaster and a large number of people previously persuaded by Brexit are no longer support it.
    Feel free to describe me as “a traitor,” “a leftie,” “following Hitler.” But, a second referendum is the only way forward. If as some on here maintain, Brexit is still a great thing, then no doubt the British Electorate will still vote for it. What are you afraid off; reality.

    • As I have said – repeatedly – having a Remainer as PM is as bad (yes, bad) as a vegan running a butcher’s shop. Regarding “But what is totally unclear is that Brexit is and will be an economic disaster and a large number of people previously persuaded by Brexit are no longer [in] support [of] it”, should that have been “totally clear”? It is thanks to May and her Remainer chums (of all parties) that things are “unclear” – made deliberately unclear to derail us leaving. We need a bulldog as PM, not a poodle.

      • The usual leaver rhetoric, all ranting & no ideas from top to bottom.

        That’s why May was chosen, because the leavers are the work shy layabouts who wouldn’t know where to start when dealing with people not brainwashed by the right wing press.

        • Thank you, Joe, for another of your usual polite comments. I worked from 17 to 65 and a half – mostly in physically demanding jobs – at times in climates from about 100 degrees F every day to well below freezing and at 10,000 feet altitude. As for who is being brainwashed…….

          For those demanding another referendum:
          Compare the UK 51.9% Leave vote with some other EU close results referenda. Sweden, Finland and Malta voted to join the EU with 52.3%, 56.9%, and 53.6% in favour. Norway and Greenland rejected membership with 53.5% and 53% against. Denmark and Sweden rejected the Euro with 53.2% and 55.9% against. The losers in those countriez did not get into a paddy and demand second referenda; they accepted the democratic verdicts of the people. Why can’t you?

    • I can see why a second referendum is attractive, but the same logic could be applied to any election. Some might say that the promises that got New Labour elected in 97 were not followed through – should there have been another vote a couple of years in?

      I think it’s impossible to determine with any certainty why a majority voted to leave the EU. The most logical approach is to accept a democratic decision and move forward as positively as possible. The same would have been true if the vote had been to remain within the EU.

      People voted how they did for their own reasons. Sadly, that’s the nature of democracy.

      If Brexit is an economic disaster, then that’s the situation. Staying in the EU may have led to an economic disaster if the Eurozone were to crash in the future. Either way, this country needs to move on and adapt to the change that’s coming and which was democratically voted for.

    • drae maybe a “leftie” “traitor” or what have you. Who really knows. However what he/she is most certainly … IS WRONG. Clearly suffering from cushioned against reality David Cameron syndrome. Convinced nobody would want O U T, he and his party included an IN-OUT Referendum in their manifesto. Spent nine million persuading the Nation with that expensive mail drop to every household. He and most of his party were convinced it would be a slam-dunk IN. WRONG IN SPADES.

      Second Referendum I hear you and others cry for. BRING IT ON. The reality of feeling in the Nation needs to be hammered home soundly again. A replay will do that. Then more cries for a third!

      Yeah right.

      Since October 1964 and up until Blair’s Hat-trick of GE successes, this household ALWAYS voted LABOUR. Since then, with one notable exception, no one has voted Labour but for several other parties. Both myself and good lady changed the voting habit of a lifetime at the last General Election. We both voted Conservative for the very first time. The way things appear to be “progressing” it will not be the last time either. The current Labour front bench line up are so politically unattractive…. poisonously so since they’ve revealed the location of their Forest of Money Trees…

      • The tories can always find 1 Billion to bribe the DUP, but the right wing press don’t want you to know that!

      • I may well be wrong, but you saying it does not make it so. Wrong about what exactly. It seems you agree with me about the desirablity of a second referrendum Good on you sir. Bring it on. Exactly.

        your comments about Blair and Cammeron are irrelevant to the debate both are yesterdays men and I never voted for either of them. Surprised that you won’t vote for Corben when you suggest that you supported Foote.

    • So what if we have a second referendum and it’s 52/48 the other way, should we then have a best of three? …and why don’t we apply the same to general elections when we get a bit fed up of the government, have a new election every month, keep people happy, I don’t think so – no sorry the result has been declared and we now need to focus positively on making a good deal from it. Clearly the government has made a complete cats arse of the preparations and should be held to account for that, but it is what it is… no second, third / fourth referendums, no ‘worst of all worlds’ soft Brexit – let’s have some faith in ourselves and pull together all people all parties and make something good from this. The world wants to do business with Britain, we don’t need to pay stupid amounts of money to Brussels each year to keep us held back. If the EU can’t reach an agreement with us then fine, let’s do this thing, I for one am fed up of talking about it now – let’s do it.

      • Chris WROTE :~

        >> let’s have some faith in ourselves and pull together all people all parties and make something good from this. The world wants to do business with Britain, we don’t need to pay stupid amounts of money to Brussels each year to keep us held back. If the EU can’t reach an agreement with us then fine, let’s do this thing, I for one am fed up of talking about it now – let’s do it. <<


        Precisely Chris …… Your closing comment nails it. Let's do it.

  17. For what it’s worth about Nissan, I remember they said future investment in the UK would be affected if we didn’t join the single currency in the 1990’s. Since then they have gone from strength to strength! I don’t think Nissan will pull out of the UK – and I don’t think the Government should let that happen. More worrying is Vauxhall at Ellesmere, they could be victims of French ownership in a post Brexit scenario?

  18. Mildly baffled about the belief you can claim British patriotism through ownership of a 1993 MG ZS120 which to all intensive purposes was a facelifted Honda Domani and never the greatest of cars but still. And I’ll happily bet a considerable amount of money it wont last the 275,000 miles of the PDI engine Mk 4 VW Golf I traded in a couple of years. ago. I’d strongly expect the Vauxhall plant at Ellesmere Port to disappear in the next 18 months, so much so I recently politely declined an invitation to a job interview there. Still, at least there will be even more coffee shops for the elderly Brexit voters to spend their final salary pensions in. The upside to all this is as the youth enter politics, we’ll re-enter the EU in less than a decade.

    • My thought as well, probably some brexiteers will change their minds just like the Thatcherites did when they realised they were being sold up the river by the poll tax.

  19. Some folks are easily baffled Andy, even midly. No patriotism involved here just common sense providing employment to my fellow Brits with my careful purchases. Here many folks could learn from our so called friends on the EU mainland who actively support home product for the very same reason. I provides essential employment! Rocket Science it aint although it appears to be for some in th eland of the mildy baffled self-inflicted.

    My “intensive purposes” MG ZS 120 must have been a time traveller in 1993 as was only built in 2003! Hah-ha-ha … much mirth… 🙂 The 1993 car was another Rover Group product as was the MG I purchased new ten years before that in 1983! Hah! 🙂 Yes, the Honda-ARGroup partnership produced some fine production cars and you’d probably lose that bet if it was against the Montego countryman which clocked closing on 800,000 miles! So carry on bigging-up alien produce and forming long queues to pay over the odds for them. Include me out!

    Then again, another Rover-Honda partnership joint venture, my son’s Rover 620ti has closing on 250,000 miles and still in regular use. As as my “Always buys German” neighbour would have it, that’s because of the “Honda” T-Series engine, you know, the one with the letters R O V E R across its spark plug cover… Rover NEVER put their name on any Honda engine. Soichiro Honda would be spinning in his grave at 25,000 rpm like some of his 1960s Grand Prix machines if any other manufacturer plastered their name across one of the Honda Motor Company of Japan’s engines! If you are a non-patriot, you can be excused for such a biased crass posting as that.

    You appear to have a lot in common with those “Brits” we entrust to this Nation’s well being who allowed the massively asset rich Rover group to be sold off dirt cheap to the Bavarian asset strippers who then proceeded to produce their versions of the Range Rovers… a spiv-like cheap sell off thus shafting the Honda partnership with Rover Group at a trice.

    It’s what we as a shorted sighted quick fix me, me, me, it’s all about choice Nation allow to happen far too frequently.

    Worth repeating so I will :~

    No patriotism involved here just common sense providing employment to my fellow Brits with my careful purchases. If you have been paying attention, you too may have noticed that in my doing the “Patriot” thing as you would have it, the trend is on the increase as a glance at any product on the Supermarket shelves will soon reveal. Union Flags everywhere stressing UK home produce. Even alien owned “British” Vauxhall stress this with current TV Car Advertisements including the words to the effect ” Building cars here since 1903! They are not alone in stressing this important aspect of the so called Global market.

    I could go out and buy a new Golf, BMW or Merc tomorrow but will NEVER do so. Accuse me of Patriotism if so chose, you will still be wrong in spades. There’s far more to it than just that. Far more, surely you can understand that even in your mildly baffled environment? There again maybe not.

    Some folks appear determined to never get it. Bit like my farmer neighbour with that large “SUPPORT BRITISH FARMING” sticker in the rear screen of his new …. B M W!

    • It’s funny how you keep banging on about asset stripping but are happy to be a suck up to them as long as they are British, they just have to wave the flags & mugs like you are putty in their hands.

  20. Actually, the result of the IN-OUT Referendum on 23rd June 2016 was not about Remainers or Leavers.

    It was clearly about the “I’m alright” Jacks and Ginas so why fix it if it aint broke and the ” I’m not alright” Jacks for which the so called Union of Europe is broke BIG TIME. Yes broken for them and has been for several decades. I’d bet a large wodge that many of those who voted remain at some stage over the past decades have lost their jobs or had their careers destroyed or worse, exported to the EU mainland as a direct result of EU membership … without them even realising that is what actually happened. To remain in the EU would mean the continuance of the dreaded brown termination envelope on the desk one morning for those arriving for work or the equally dreaded email explaining the reason why folks here no longer have a job.

    It really was as simple as that.

    • Yes… I also see that the French Ambassador to Italy has been recalled over a dispute. So much for the “entente cordial” between other EU members?

      • Do the Italians have a phrase for “entente cordiale”? In English: “The barley water is in the marquee”.

      • Considering the yellow jackets are France’s answer to the brexiteers (we want the impossible or else!) & Italy’s current government are similarly inclined it’s not surprising.

    • It’s not nearly as broken as the babyboomers who seem so desperate to return us to being the sick man of Europe for a second time (but have drunk too much kool aid to realise!) by being too deluded that getting out of Europe will return us to the job for life era that had more or less died 50 years ago & even the best efforts of the government & unions couldn’t stop.

      Far more jobs have lost to the far east, thanks to the above, but too many people seem to think the world wants 3rd world work at 1st world prices.

      For the record I’ve been working full time for 20 years & any job losses have been due to management stupidity than anything to do with the EU. In fact every company I have worked for has traded almost entirely in the UK

      Even a soft Brexit is going to lose us jobs, but the deluded Tory boys who think they still rule the empire (but have cash stashed abroad & a bolt hole to run to) & their lazy psudeo working class yob army (who will be bawling like spoilt brats in the street when the realise they have been sold a pup)seem to think this will suddenly be the start of a golden age.

    • I asked the wife if she wanted an in-out referendum last night and she thankfully voted yes.

      She won’t be getting pregnant though, we used the EU withdrawal method.

  21. Even so, his incessant skew of reality and overuse of psychobabble terminology like baby boomers shows a tenacity which in other circumstances could be seen as admirable. I guess like so many “I’m alright Jack” know-it-all know-nowts, they excel at getting it wrong. Maybe he has never received the dreaded brown envelope … always a first time.

    Severance of the parasitical umbilical cord to Brussels will result in some job losses. No contest there. Nowhere near the overall total already lost and would continue to be lost or moved to the mainland if the UK remained as the host sustaining the parasites of Brussels. Joe King’s determined failure to appreciate that is clearly … failure.

    He believes the majority voted the way they did for unsound reasons. Clearly JK does not have a clue… beyond clueless.

    • I’m sorry but your right wing tabloid addled mind is far more unable to accept reality.

      I was at secondary school during the early 1990s when teachers were steering pupils away from economy sensitive jobs, especially as there were already people who had been filling up dole queues for a decade who had once done those jobs thinking they would be doing them until they were drawing their pension.

      In short if you’ve never known job security you’ll choose places of work that are stable when the economy slips.

      A too good to fail mentality is paradoxically one of the easiest way to fail, which for too many British people born between 1945 & 1960 is why Johnny Foreigner won.

  22. “people who had been filling up dole queues for a decade who had once done those jobs thinking they would be doing them until they were drawing their pension”? People who would rather take the other taxpayers’ money than do another job or move to another part of the country. I took what ever jobs were going – labouring, etc – in preference to being on the dole. Both in the UK and when living broad. All it takes is swallowing one’s pride and opening one’s eyes.

  23. Secondary school teachers are the least qualified not least by experience to advise on jobs and careers. Like many within the public sector, most can enjoy a “job for life” cushioned against reality environment. Plus, lefty Governments will promise regular salary increases for them to ensure votes for the team in red even if such regular increases are not earned by increased productivity as is always the case in the Private Sector. .

    Joe King is clearly joking and if I were King, things would be different. Every public sector employee would only get the job if previously they had to earn, withn emphasis on the word EARN, their living outside the Public sector in the harsher environment…. otherwise no job offer. Above all this would apply to all those we vote for every four or five years for those gravy train Westminster jobs in the big house within the green leather seats.

    OK I joked and jested about Joe King joking. He appears to be some form of political activist blinded by his know-it-all know-nowt slants on just about everything. Joe’s writing style reminds me of a weaker version of that over that top Lefty Owen Jones ( he of the Right Wing Main Stream media … 🙂 ) who our leftward leaning guaranteed and unearned revenue stream broadcaster allow to spout his form of know-it-all know-nowt “expert” view incessantly at every opportunity.

    Simply unqualified to have even a sliver of clues.. Clueless in extreme in their “I’m alright Jack” fake news vending world.

    • I’m not a politically activist I’m just counterpointing your one dimensional rent a yob rhetoric which is far more know-it-all know-nowt than I’ll ever be.

      I’m ironic that you admit you were once a Labour supporter, or is that just a way of admitting you’ve screwed everything you can from the left & now are trying from the right, even though your are just dispensable layabout scum to Tory boys who will drop you like a hot brick when they get their way.

      Talking of Tory Boys a lot of them have never really had a job which they didn’t manage to get through the old boy network, something you’ll never manage even if you had Welcome tattooed on your back.

      These days almost everyone without access to this has worked in in private sector before doing any public sector work, so it’s a moot point, so cut the right wing cultural revolution guff.

      Just for the record every full time job I’ve had has been in the private sector, with just 2-3 temporary ones in the public sector.

    • Just as an aside from the whole Brexit thing because I can’t let this pass: before we start chuntering on about ‘those who can’t, teach’ and ‘lefty’/’trendy’ (delete as applicable) layabout teachers with their leather elbow patches yadda yadda yadda, the modern day teacher is held extremely, and absurdly, accountable for things which are way beyond their control ie non existent parenting, exam boards that make random, unannounced changes to the way they assess, politicians using soundbites about education they barely understand themselves etc etc. There is an atmosphere of hyper accountability that can, and does, break people who waltz into the profession from ‘the real world’, not quite understanding what it is they’re getting themselves into…They soon leave…

      • I wouldn’t be a teacher for all the tea in China, no way, no how…. nor a Policeman either… couldn’t pay me enough

  24. The main problem with (state school) teachers is that most of them leave, school, obtain a teaching degree, go to teacher training college, and then straight into teaching – for life; with no experience of any other job, most likely no private sector job where the business has to be profitable/successful to survive. A number of the masters who taught me in primary and secondary school would have come from the armed forces after the end of WWII. Perhaps that was where they learned to aim those pieces of blackboard chalk with such accuracy.

    • Actually, that’s not true. Most teachers I know have private sector experience and few have a purely teaching degree. They’re perfectly familiar with the private sector’s school of hard knocks…but they find actual schools have harder knocks than they’d experienced before.

  25. The first job I had (ignoring milk delivering on Saturdays and Sundays as a schoolboy) was a public sector one. It was called the British Army.

  26. OK Joe… you’re excused.

    For your information. Retiring aged sixty-eight ( Prepared to work on – I was terminated ) I spent a third of my working years which exceeded half a century working in the Private Sector, another third in the Public Sector ( as it enabled me to spend far more time with my then young sons now in their early thirties ) and the remaining half ( note Corbyn lefty front bench money tree type calculations there .. 😉 ) as a self-employed one man business often putting in a twenty hour working day and enjoying every second being my own Guvnor.

    Could be we have more in common than you would be prepared to admit. Further information, from October 1964 until Tony Blair’s Hat trick success of General Election wins, I always voted for the team in the red corner. Given the present quality of the Labour Front Bench, can never ever see me voting for such a shower again.

    Corbyn has identified his Money Tree plantation… can you guess where it’s located?

    No more exchanges with you Joe. You obviously know far more about life than my experience will ever allow. Plus, despite several attempts to negate my single parent family upbringing in London’s impoverish East End by Hitler’s Luftwaffe, [ at that age I thought the “war” was good fun ] my younger brother and I later managed to knuckle down and work for what little we have acquired. Schools and numerous other influences back then taught and demonstrated to us the benefits of working to EARN, not promote a widespread lefty approach to claim “rights” and “benefits” like far too many are allowed to chose as a harmful career option at other taxpayers’ expense.

    • I’m not a fan of Corbyn either, but the Tories seem to be money no object when they need to do things like bribe the DUP.

      It’s mostly a point of view here, I’m not brilliantly qualified or have great earning power, thanks to learning difficulties, but can live comfortably without much effort, something that many people earning much more than me seem to find very hard somehow.

      If anything it’s a right wing thing these days to expect everything to be handed to you on a plate even without putting much if any effort.

      It’s normally the sort of people who think anyone doing less well than them are lazy benefits fraudsters & anyone doing better are snobs and / or on the make.

  27. Labour’s problem now is it’s been hijacked by a metropolitan middle class who hang out in trendy middle class areas like Islington and have little in common with the traditional working class voter. To me, they seem to despise anyone in the working class who has improved themselves and, Heaven forbid, might consider voting Tory and hold politically incorrect views on immigration and ” diversity”, the new buzzword for political correctness. No wonder Labour’s emphasis seems to be on benefit claimants, who they know will always vote Labour as they’re like a client state to them.

    • Labour – and the whole political class of the UK – should look at two countries currently more successful than us, and ask them about “diversity”: China and Saudi Arabia. Not much touchy-feely diversity in either.

      • Everywhere is diverse. What you’re talking about is sustaining inequality. Why in heaven’s name would you want to model the UK on either China or Saudi Arabia? There’s no point in being successful and wealthy if achieving that comes at the expense of people’s wellbeing. I don’t like the thought of the UK’s welfare net being taken advantage of by people unwilling to work who could and should, but that’s not a reason to take the net away. Just the same as we shouldn’t take the NHS away because people rely on it to deal with the consequences of poor lifestyle choices.

        nb., political correctness is the vacuous, unthinking pursuit of not wanting to cause offence – whilst at the same time not understanding why something is offensive. It’s a politician’s aim to avoid losing votes without the effort of trying to understand the voter. ‘Anti-PC’ should mean to put the effort into understanding people and genuine empathy. Unfortunately, it instead seems to be used as an excuse to act like an inconsiderate prat by too many.

  28. Glenn here you have identified Corbyn’s Money Tree Plantation :~

    >>To me, they seem to despise anyone in the working class who has improved themselves <<

    In all my many years as a Labour Party supporter I cannot remember such an unattractive line up shower as most of the occupants of their current front bench now. Here I include the Titled Sir…in that line up.

    • @ MG John, you are referring to the dull as dishwater Sir Keir Starmer, who seems to have absolutely no charisma, but at least doesn’t inhabit the same early eighties hard left backwater that Jeremy Corbyn lives in. Corbyn’s idea of Brexit, popular in the Labour Party of the Foot and Benn era, is some kind of state controlled siege economy that would be even worse than a No Deal Brexit.

  29. To be clear, I voted Brexit, still stand behind that decision and would vote the same again tomorrow, despite the fact that the government have been complacent in their (our) preparation for it.
    We pay £13bn (yes billion, that’s a lot of money) into the EU each year, yes we get around £4bn back but I’d rather spend the remaining £9bn here thank you. Much of that goes toward supporting nations that refuse to manage their own economies just because they are part of ‘the club’ – who then come cap-in-hand for bail outs. The original coalition of European nations has outgrown itself and is long past its’ sell by date. Let’s spend our hard earned money how we choose and not chuck it all around Europe like confetti.

    There are 750 MPs in Europe, (over 100 more than our own parliament and all paid a shed load more money) making decisions that are sometimes bizarre and sometimes not in our interests, I’d rather make our own decisions, thank you very much… remember the bent bananas, not being allowed to recycle tea bags, kids not allowed to blow up balloons on their own… I refuse to pay £9bn for this clap trap.

    Industry, I’m under no illusion of a return to ‘good old 1980s’ manufacturing, I was unfortunately part of this and still remember walking out on strike (many times) because ‘the management’ moved a coffee table – true story!! And by the way if you vote in Len McCluskey, oh sorry, Jeremy Corbyn (but LM makes the decisions) you’ll very soon be back to the good old days of general strikes, 20% inflation an unsustainable welfare system and 90% tax brackets… his money tree doesn’t actually exist – fact!! …should I mention Dianne Abbot here, no that would be too easy to make a joke of, I’ll leave it to her to do that for herself.

    Immigration, this country needs immigration, it’s been great for us and will continue to be… nowhere in Brexit does it say people are no longer welcome, but at least let’s have some control over it please, it can’t continue to be a free for all. Open the gates for temporary agricultural workers, nurses, factory workers… as long and as much as you like, everyone welcome but in a more managed way. Don’t forget we’re at 4% unemployment right now, we need people.

    On another note, the ‘EU’ could have stopped this when David Cameron went round cap in hand to try and get us a better deal pre-referendum but they treated us as a joke and conceded us a packet of biscuits and a Cornish Pasty (as long as it was made in Cornwall) as a token offer.

    And finally ‘Soft Brexit’ keeps all of the things people voted they didn’t want, and gives us no control over them – don’t even go there, that would be a travesty.

    Again, I say have faith in a great nation with so much going for us and let’s just do this thing, with a deal great, without a deal there will be bigger losers than us but if that’s what the EU want, bring it on.

    • Splendid contribution there Chris. You outline many of the reasons I and 17.4 million voted OUT. Not just on a National level, on a personal level, I have suffered directly from the negative aspects of this Nation’s parasitic membership of the so called Union. Is it really a massive NINE BILLION per annum!… I did not realise it was that massive extracted from those working to provide those outgoing hard to come by and earn taxes to Brussels. Yes, I voted IN back in the 1970s. That vote was for our inclusion in what was then called “The Common Market” back in those now distant days. I did not vote for the parasitic Monster the so called Union of Europe has evolved into.

      Like you, if there was a replay and that could happen if the moaner losers get their way, I and just about everyone I have asked will again vote O-U-T!

      Yet, still widespread in some sections of the UK’s mainstream media, of which one is in the spearhead, less than covertly suggest us “Plebs” … their words… voted O-U-T for racial reasons. More FAKE NEWS slanted bias failing miserably to appreciate that like the vast majority of UK Brits, the vast majority of the EU’s Mainland population are the same bluddy race! Those cushioned against reality inhabiting Islington, Westminster and the self-inflicted UK MSM ( Main Stream Media ) can afford such prejudicial bias. The EU aint broke for any of them. It is BROKE for millions of the rest of us.

      Something must be done. Back on June 23rd 2016, there was at last a positive sign that this Nation had been alerted to the negativity of the EU problem. Which sent a firm and “let us make this very clear”… 🙂 message to those we entrust to this Nation’s longer term well-being that something HAS to be done … and sharpish. Then a better future is in this Nation’s control unlike most of the past four decades of decay.

      • I am one of the “plebs / morons/ imbecile” who voted to leave. It was, in my case, absolutely nothing to do with immigration, but everything to do with the right to self determination which has ever so slowly, but inexorably , been being withdrawn in favour of ever closer union. The process has been carried on very stealthily by mostly unelected bureaucrats , together with partly elected buffoons such as Runt and the unfortunately named Juncker . I seem to recall there was another small-statured European with slicked down hair and a moustache who had similar ideas . Look where all that ended

        • Mr Storey, I disagree with you. I don’t want to leave the EU but I think we will and I imagine that by this time next year we will have some early impressions of how that has gone and, hopefully, be able to civilly discuss them here.

          Whatever the situation next year there will have to be some serious national discussion about how we deal with it and we need to start preparing for that now. To that end, is it really fair to make ad hominem attacks on EU officials and what really is a spurious comparison with Hitler?

          Can I refer you to the debate we had here last year…


          And then to the words posted 18 May 2018 at 4.24 pm.

          The threads for this situation go back decades and, roughly speaking, the generation that has had the biggest influence leading to this is the Baby Boomers (a demographic term, not psychobabble as some suggest) who were in the factories, offices and Parliament driving our economy and politics through the last 5 or 6 decades. I am one.

          By this time next year I fear that the arguments will be worse, but by then we really will need to be able to discuss things rationally. I’m angry too, but couldn’t the Baby Boomer grey heads (yep, I’m grey) set an example here and follow some good advice from last year?

          • Well , you are , of course, quite correct . It is a hazard of these threads I suppose

          • This time next year … you wish. No chance Too many brainwashed expect this to be a quick-fix issue like so many which have worked so well to the benefit on the Nation’s Longer Term well-being. Yeah … right.

            It will take years for the UK as a whole to fully recover, survive and thrive after severing the parasitical umbilical cord channelling UK Taxpayers’ hard to come by. A quick fix was never on the cards. Patience, hard work and time means a slow fix. Slow and sure to secure a better longer term future.

            As I type this I have both 24/7/365 News channels running in the background.
            MSM, Westminster types still squabbling over this issue. Their view of things clearly muddled ( 🙂 ) by their lack of under standing of what will be a long term recovery process… for the many .. not the few….Terms like “Crashing Out” and divided Nation…skirting carefully around the fact that it is one divided Nation which is part of the British Isles ( Formerly Eire ) which is being used to torpedo any real and effective progress to sever that parasitic umbilical cord to Brussels. So conveniently covertly hiding the real meaning of what folks voted for by using the term ….. BREXIT.

            It will not be easy. It will take time. Lots of it. If there is still sufficient quantities of what some call the “Right Stuff” then the future will be just fine. Trouble is, some think too many ineffective quick-fix uncontrolled policies has dilute the Right Stuff resolve. I hope they are wrong. Being wrong is allowed far too often. It’s what we do or, just maybe… DID… in view of the result back in June 2016. That was only the start. The journey will be a long one but, worthwhile.

            T. Blair on TV right now….What a soft speaking slim ball Tony Blair has become. I was pleased to vote for him no less than three times back in the day. How things can change.

        • Nice of you christopher storey to build amost a whole post around the usual right wing press soundbites that have long being debunked to show you how much of the Kool Aid you’ve drunk.

    • I disagree with you would like to pick up on some points where I think you are mistaken.

      “There are 750 MPs in Europe, (over 100 more than our own parliament and all paid a shed load more money) making decisions that are sometimes bizarre and sometimes not in our interests, I’d rather make our own decisions, thank you very much… remember the bent bananas, not being allowed to recycle tea bags, kids not allowed to blow up balloons on their own… I refuse to pay £9bn for this clap trap.”

      750 MEPs does seem a lot, but it is a false equivalent to compare it to our own House of Commons without clarification. The UK has a population of just under 66m and has 650 MPs. The EU has a population of about 512.6 million for 750 MEPs. So an MEPs constituency is more than six times bigger than a British MP. You might well have a point about the level of their remuneration, but if you think they do not provide value for money, please explain why.

      But if you suggest that part of your dissatisfaction is because of them making bizarre decisions not in our interest, etc., I am really confused because all your examples are myths.

      In the first instance, as I have pointed out elsewhere on this site, although the EU Commission can propose a law, it can only be where EU governments have unanimously agreed to allow it to do so. So in other words, if our own elected government did not think a law was in our interest, it could veto it from the start.

      This link explains it very well:


      On the matter of the three bizarre decisions you cite:

      Bent bananas. A euro myth.

      Recycling tea bags. A euro myth.

      Children and balloons. A Euro myth.

      I don’t expect this to change your mind, but hope you would agree that we all benefit if myths are exposed for what they are.

      • Interesting that from all of the salient points I raised including our £13bn contribution (yes, again, £billion) that you want to debate bent bananas, guess we could go around in circles for a long time on the detail / interpretation, however to respond to your specific concerns;
        Commission regulation 2257/94 decrees that bananas in general should be “free from malformation or abnormal curvature” – EU regulation!!
        Tea bag ban over foot-and-mouth (BBC News 7 January 2005)
        Householders have been told not to throw tea bags in waste meant for compost because it is a foot-and-mouth risk. Under EU law the UK is fully entitled to impose stringent standards… EU regulation !!
        Balloons quote…the new directive 2009/48 and related standards …”Warning! Children under eight years can choke or suffocate on uninflated or broken balloons. Adult supervision required. Keep uninflated balloons from children. Discard broken balloons at once.” EU directive – fact, come on, you have to agree this is common sense territory not £100k per year bureaucrat stuff, I’m fed up with it, a waste of all of our time and money.
        I hope this has cleared up some of your confusion at least and hope you would agree there are often different understandings / interpretations to every story, believe what you will.
        There’s a host of other examples but just to come back on your questions, I for one don’t want to pay £13bn per year for this, nor to allow the Spanish et al to excessively fish our coastal waters, nor to pay £150mn to needlessly move the EU headquarters, I could go on… 🙂

        • Thank you for your response.

          I really don’t see why you criticise me for picking up on things you said that are inaccurate as though they are trivial. I responded where I did because I thought you had not represented the points fairly, but if you thought they are worth mentioning, why should I not comment?

          I think you are still misrepresenting the three issues but the links are there and others can read them if they choose.

          To be fair, I should have said that I agree with you about immigration and that a return to large scale manufacturing, but I forgot. I’m pleased to correct that.

          Your other points I viewed as your opinion, and simply said I disagree.

          • There is aa break down of what we actually contribute to the EU
            It’s much less then you think after you take into accout the rebate and the monies spent in the UK (this excludes monies spent for HQ EU operations in the UK) it also does not take into account monies spent on things like police collaboration, air traffic harmonisation that if we left the EU would would still have to contribute to.

  30. Emphasis on UK Manufacturing is definitely on a massively spreading Nationwide increase. Not before time and rightly so.

    As I trawl the WWW, I have the excellent World Grand Prix Snooker from Cheltenham Racecourse ( How about that ? ) coverage on Freeview Channel 24 ITV4 ~ even won a few quid betting frame by frame ~ and during some of the TV Commercial Breaks, a CARLING Beer advertisement mention of all things Manufacturing and closed with the legend … “MADE LOCAL”.

    A Nation is fast waking up from its commercial Industry and Manufacturing slumbers. It needs to too. Sharpish.

  31. “As I trawl the WWW, I have the excellent World Grand Prix Snooker from Cheltenham Racecourse”. A game greatly supported by advertising played at a venue whose sole purpose is gambling. And that is “A Nation is fast waking up from its commercial Industry and Manufacturing slumbers”? It reminds me of the last days of Rome. And we are supposed to be in an era of austerity! What has happened to “the bare/bear necessities of life”?

  32. “As I trawl the WWW, I have the excellent World Grand Prix Snooker from Cheltenham Racecourse”. A game greatly supported by advertising played at a venue whose sole purpose is gambling. And that is “A Nation is fast waking up from its commercial Industry and Manufacturing slumbers”? It reminds me of the last days of Rome. And we are supposed to be in an era of austerity! What has happened to “the bare/bear necessities of life”?

  33. Christopher – I suspect Joe King is from the USA, hence his Kool Aid jibe. “Kool-Aid is a brand of flavoured drink mix owned by Kraft Foods. The powder form was created by Edwin Perkins in 1927 based upon a liquid concentrate called Fruit Smack”. No doubt very popular with US adolescents of all ages.

    In the 1950s in the UK, one could buy Tower brand lemon crystals in small tins. Unsugared – or barely so – a teaspoon of the crystals in a cup of water made a very refreshing and sharp drink. Ideal for packing on a picnic, or when going for a walk over Dartmoor; just fill a cup from a stream and add the crystals.

  34. The Brexit light bulb moment for me was when I watched a television program that featured a Tate & Lyle executive who carefully articulated the impact on the sugar industry arising from joining the, then, “Common Market”. He explained that the UK had agreements in place to buy sugar cane from the West Indies at competitive prices. On joining the Common Market the tariffs imposed rendered the purchase of sugar cane from the West Indies uneconomic at a price that was higher than sugar beet from within Europe. However, the price of sugar beet within Europe was HIGHER than the former price from the West Indies.

    He advised that this was the case for many commodity items where the consumer was forced to pay higher prices for items of European origin over the rest of the world. To me this makes no sense at all and is tantamount to price fixing to support inefficient European commodity production.

    I am no scholar in economics and the like but trading in such a way is strange to my way of thinking and using it as and excuse for peace is crazy. European countries, of which we are one, can work together on sharing intelligence, crime, standards etc. without being hamstrung by adopting a United States of Europe approach. I want to go to France, Belgium etc and witness different cultures, I do not want us all to form a “lowest common denominator conglomerate” which seems to be one of the EU’s current mantras.

    Let’s use this opportunity wisely!

    • Here, here.

      Of course, the ideal end point is to produce our commodities locally where possible, reduce our consumption, stabilise our population and live sustainably as a country.

      Brexit is an opportunity to start moving towards that future, if it is used wisely.

      • RoverBrexit and John H.

        I hope you’ll forgive me dealing with both your posts in one go – it isn’t meant to misrepresent either of you.

        I am very confused by your posts since you seem to be in agreement, yet there are some possible contradictions in what you say. I am not an economist either, so if I have a misunderstanding I am sure somebody will correct me.

        You might well have a point about the effect on commodity prices when we joined in 1973, I don’t know. However, what we need to concentrate on today is the effect on the UK of leaving on 29 March 2019.

        But if the effect of joining in 1973 was to protect the production of EU sugar beet, then does that protect UK sugar beet production now? I have no idea what sugar cane prices are, but if they undercut our domestic sugar beet production, will that be a good thing for sustainable farming in the UK?

        There are certainly risks to UK production of lamb and beef from animals raised overseas where husbandry standards are not so high and hormones and more anti-biotics are allowed.Doesn’t leaving the EU make it harder for us to standalone and for our agriculture to be sustainable?

        The reference to a United States of Europe and the lowest common denominator does baffle me a little. I am not aware that you have said as much, so just to be clear: I am not saying that you have, but often one of the usual complaints against the EU is of it trying to impose too high standards, not too low. Common standards obviously allow us to trade easily across the EU. Surely that is a good thing? And, as I have pointed out in a post above, some of the supposed silly regulations are mythical.

        But if you are interested in what the United States of America might be seeking in a possible trade deal, you might like to read this article about the US wanting to remove high standards that protect us now.

        Here’s What US Lobbyists Want Donald Trump to Get From a Post-Brexit Trade Deal


        The article lists 30 of more than 130 asks by US lobbyists. It is worth reading and whilst I don’t know what might alarm you, I picked out these…

        Scrap the safety-first approach to food quality and standards

        Allow the sale of hormone-riddled beef

        Slash British cattle farming subsidies

        Get rid of Britain’s safety-first approach to chemicals

        Ignore the presence of hormones and pus in dairy products
        Yes, that is pus in milk.

        End rules that let British shoppers know what colourings are in their food

        Lift the UK ban on a growth hormone in pork
        Ractopamine is allowed in the US, but banned in 160 countries, including the UK.

        Eliminate UK testing for a parasitic worm in pork

        Legalise dangerous pesticides
        On that subject you might have seen the alarming report today about the plummeting number of insects worldwide>

        You might not want a United States of Europe, as you call it, but those are some of the lower common denominators we will have to deal with if we want a trade deal with the United States of America.

        I agree that we, and the world, should stabilise populations and live sustainably, but if we leave the EU do you think we will be able to fend off these horrors (they sound horrible to me) when we trade with economic giants like the USA?

        You are probably aware that the economist often preferred by the leaders of leaving the EU, Professor Patrick Minford, has said that leaving will just about demolish our manufacturing and farming.

        Clearly I disagree with you and when even Pro Brexit tycoons like My Dyson chose to manufactures his products in Singapore that has a trade deal with the EU, I really struggle to see how we can use this opportunity wisely.

        I admire your optimism, but given the late stage of the game, could you please explain the practical measures that avoid or outweigh these issues above?

        • You appear to have forgotten about an organisation called the (British) Commonwealth. Buying cane sugar from the West Indies was to “keep it in the family”, as was buying New Zealand lamb – nothing wrong there – and Australian beef I imagine (ditto). Before the Argies invaded the Falklands, Argentinian beef was quite normally seen on butchers’ slabs. Who died of Fray Bentos corned beef?

    • And I recall seeing cane sugar being harvested in the West Indies and Australia in the 1970s and 1980s. I wonder where it was going. Also, on my travels around East Anglia in the 1990s, I saw the beet factories dotting the horizon.

  35. 97
    Actually the Headline Title of the Topic is a news slant of the Fake variety. Consider this.

    “Opinion : Why Brexit is killing our car industry”

    “Our” Car Industry was an endangered species long before any mention of a Referendum. Yes, high on the red list of endangered species then becoming becoming extinct when the then Government turned its back on the asset stripped remnants of the once massively asset rich former Rover group. However, by then the 6,000 employees and many more outside Longbridge were reliant on a … Private Company. The Government in red do not “do” private so not only turned their backs to the Longbridge workers, but unless the news at the time was more of the FAKE variety, actively torpedoed any chance of financial rescuing partnership with another manufacturer. I have not voted Labour since.

    Meantime, brainwashed UK car consumers, not to confused with folks who know what goes on under their car’s bonnets, formed queues to pay over the odds for so called superior alien product. So superior that repairs to one Stuttgart product cost far more than I paid for my new MG ZS 120 … on the road. About that time two other immediate neighbours were made redundant. Apparently clients were looking abroad for those services their company provided. One neighbour approached me on a “You know about cars John” asking about a cheap Rover he was considering buying. ASt that time a new 3-Series and Golf occupied the space in front of his hard standing. I was tempted to say look on the bright side, you have much more time to clean the BMW and VW. I did not of course, I do not kick anyone let alone when they’re down. The other neighbour made redundant when his hydraulic company employers folded for much the same reason. He however had a skill set and set up his own Hydraulics consultancy business and last time I saw he and his good lady, things were looking up. Meantime a nice Rover R8 stood where once the Golf and 3-Series once were. He told me he had no idea how nice that Rover would be until he tried it! Sounds familiar… bit like Stuttgart repair neighbour told me when I gave him a lift in my the quite old MG ZT Turbo… no not the one with the BMW Engine, the one with the “They all do that 1.8 K-Series… only mine do not do that. Back then I put a for sale notice on my works Notice Board for a Rover 620ti which became surplus. A work colleague’s BMW 5-Series needed a head gasket renewal and he needed transport sharpish. I demonstrated the car in our lunch hour and pulled into a lay by on the nearby Dual Carriageway…Soon on the move… “John… This Rover is quicker than my 5-Series” … Who knew.. he did then. He could not get round to the Building Society quick enough. Soon after a friend of the family had his bought new Focus develop terminal engine and some gearbox issues. Offered it to me as a project. My wife suggested he could use the spare 620ti we had at the time which I had had an offer for already. OK, he’s a good friend in trouble and so I allowed him to borrow the car for his daily 60 mile round trip commute strictly on the basis that if he breaks it, he buys it and… must get it insured. Half an hour later the phone rang … it was him … Oh dear what’s wrong 🙁 . Actually nothing was wrong. He quickly became so impressed with the car he wanted to buy it and paid my asking price.

    All these folks and many many more in my experience had no idea how nice “our” cars were. Brainwashing wot dun it … init. By “our” I mean the former Indigenous UK Car Industry… not the heavily financed and subsidised Trojan Horse outfits allowed access to greenfioeld sites and huge inducements to build Car with foreign names here in the once much more greener and pleasant. Long before any mention of an IN-OUT Referendum, all warned than when it suits them, not the UK, they will be gone or shift production elsewhere leaving token set ups allowing access to the fatter margins were pay in the UK.

    Brits treated as mugs… never give a sucker an even break. Keep forming those queues to pay over the odds for alien product. As some have told me.. “It’s all about choice John” .. yes, they are right, the choices of decline.

  36. “brainwashed UK car consumers, not to confused with folks who know what goes on under their car’s bonnets, formed queues to pay over the odds for so called superior alien product.”
    Let’s not overlook the fact that Rover’s demise was brought about in part by a dated, overpriced and oddly pitched product range. This was reality and nothing to do with brainwashing.
    For instance, they tried selling the 1995 200 ‘bubble’ series as a replacement for the R8 – this was a hopeless idea, as the newcomer was only slightly bigger than the Metro – but priced a class above.
    History repeated itself with the 400 series, which initially was pitched price-wise against bigger rivals like the 406 and Mondeo. What was essentially a 1994 Honda Domani with a chrome grille and number plate plinth simply could not compete.
    By the time the models were realigned to the segment they should have been aimed at from the beginning as the 25 and 45, they were old designs and it was too late.
    Then there was the 75…. a good car, but again, oddly pitched between two established segments, and about as trendy as granny’s parlour. All this retro stuff was simply not what the masses craved.
    Finally, the Z cars came along – it was all too obvious that they were (cleverly) warmed over versions of some pretty dated machinery – and again, lacked that aspirational quality as a result.
    So as I said, brainwashing had nothing to do with it – it’s all about the right product at the right time at the right price, and it has to be said that Rover messed up.

    • “Didn’t this used to be a site for car enthusiasts?”

      Enthusiasts of the British car industry, which leave voters have destroyed.

      • British car Industry is alive and well and thriving in ….. Malvern.

        Some said years ago, all the alien trojan horse outfits here will up sticks and leave when it suits THEM, not us. Of that I am very guilty.

        At least I can still buy a Transit van built in Hampshire…

        Still lets blame June 23rd 2016 and ignore the real reasons for the short-term fixes that have produced the huge range of long term harm.

        It was simply a matter of time.

        Those Germans, French, Italians and all the rest who protected and supported their own indigenous manufacturing have got it all wrong. Bad decisions. They’ll be sorry mark my words.

        • Ironically Brexit is the biggest quick fix there is, thouwing out 46 years of progress so that billionaire tax dodgers can make a killing, but only with the help of the bawling idiots of “yob mob” like you, brainwashed by the right wing press for decades.

          Once they have cleared out you’ll be treated like the vomit stain on the floor of humanity you always were.

          • BREXIT = severing the parasitical umbilical cord to the parasites in Brussels can never lead to a quick-fix. Only benefits in the long term. You like many in successive UK Governments will never understand the meaning of the words longer term benefits.

            Yet again you clearly demonstrate a myopic short term mindset.

            Your closing sentence shows the true worth of your myopic and snide mindset of true colours on this otherwise interesting exchange of viewpoints spoiled by the likes of the insulting Joke which is Joe King.

            Long before the Diesel Bovine Excrement hit the VAG fans, I am also on record stating that the clueless accepted “expert” advice back then from the EU mainland WITHOUT QUESTION. Bought Diesels on a false premise. Advice about how environmentally friendly were compression ignition oil burning power units compared to those burning some of good old RON’s 95 stuff. This greatly benefited Diesel car manufacturers … Guess where …. on the EU mainland. Pure coincidence some would say. Not me..

            At the same time, suggested back then with their unfair Petrol v. Diesel tax rates based on that misleading basis that all those involved with that mindset should be made to stand behind their diesel cars during the emissions part of the MoT test… ideally taking deep breaths throughout. Then ask themselves how the hell any ever pass the test… but, they do… ever wondered why?

          • So 46 years of becoming enmeshed in “ever closer union” with a Germany-dominated super-state is “progress”?

            Once again JK has produced an analytical assessment of the situation. Does he latch onto other fora to spread his message?

  37. Sunderland is dying, Swindon is gone, Ford will soon pull out and Jaguar/Land Rover is Indian owned, so they may leave as well.

    Remain voters like myself warned you all this would happen and all we got is project fear screamed at us. Well it turns out we were right and you were all wrong.

    I take no pleasure in saying this, I am a patriot. The leave voters here have destroyed this country and now there is nothing we can do about it. I can’t even get angry with you anymore, what is the point?

    • Bartelbe – the main cause is not Brexit but the over-production of cars world-wide. The public are fed up being told they should be buying a new car every three years, just to keep car makers in business. I’ve kept most of my cars for a decade or more – all bought second-hand. The down-turn in China shows up the absurdity in British car makers expecting foreign countries to buy their goods. Now Japanese companies are feeling the cold in the UK. Tough. People are starting to buy what they need, not what they are told the need. We are in an age driven by advertising; it is time it came to its senses.

      • Yeah right, it is just a co-incidence that it is all the British factories closing. How many plants are shutting in Germany again?

        • Do you really need easy to follow diagrams to explain that?

          The Germans own their car factories … the so called British Car Industry is largely in the control and ownership of alien interests.

          Spot the difference …. if you can.

  38. Why did you not get angry yars ago when the quick-fix damage was really done?

    What is the Government doing to reverse the trend some ask. Good question.

    Nothing, they in the Blue Corner created the trend when throwing many millions of British taxpayers’ hard to come by as inducements for alien manufacturers to set up bases here. Still our media and Westminster types refer to those funds “investment” as Government money.

    That they did so was one way of dealing with the then “Union Problem”. Kill the Union blood supply by killing indigenous Industry. Sorted.

    Back in the 1970-80s, my daily commute took me past the then greenfield site which the Honda Plant now occupies. I suspect such massive financial inducements were provided for the East Midland and North East Japanese outfits to set up there too.

    Clearly our various Governments only see the Quick-fix solutions… never consider the longer term.

    When our “worker” favouring Government in the Red Corner turned their back on the many thousands of jobs at Longbridge back in April 2005, where was all the concern for those poor devils? Precious little effective concern only wringing of hands and clueless something must be done lip service. Not to mention all the other jobs who were reliant on the parts supply to Longbridge… many more thousands. By then the remnant paucity of asset stripped former Rover Group were in Private hands. The Government in the Red Corner don’t “do” private, only throw massive funds down various Public Sector money pits which never solves their real issues, but, does ensure more Labour votes.

    It’s what we do and allow to happen all too often. It must stop …. or else…

    It’s not all bad news today. Looking on the bright side, as I type this I have Chelsea v. Man U FA Cup on in the background. I’ve had a few quid on Man U at 7-2… a price offer I could not refuse. They’ve just scored…. That’s done it. Now watch the London Team get two…. 🙁

    • It’s a big ironic you on on about quick fixed whne you sound jusr like the right wing tabloid brainwashed money grabber who always wants things done yesterday & governments regardless of party are forced to try & deliver on this in a classic example of the tail wagging the dog.

  39. Joe King joking again.

    Not yesterday or last week or even on June 23rd 2016, I’ve been banging the Trojan Horse so called UK Car Industry drum loudly on car web sites for two decades now. I first accessed the web in 1997.

    Lost count of the times I’ve responded to myopic types like you with my response… I could see the long term negativity … no need for a crystal ball. It is simply commercial sense in a shark infested global commercial world and so it will continue to come to pass in biblical dimensions.

    How much more billions of UK taxpayers hard to come by taxes should we continue to throw down these alien controlled money pits to persuade them to … er… remain?

    I used to trade internationally. Guess what, some folks do not play fair unlike a minnow Nation in the Industrial and Commercial World who shall remain [ urgh ] nameless. I’ll give you a dozen guesses who that is although one should amply suffice!

    Worth repeating for the umpteenth time :~


  40. The Honda decision hardly comes as a surprise . Honda has been finished in the UK as a mainstream car, as opposed to motorcycle, manufacturer for may years if not decades. When did you last see any Honda on our roads except a quite small number of Jazz and some of those rather awful CRV things? They were kept going in the UK by small but assiduous dealers who gave exemplary service. 2 or 3 years ago, many of these were axed in favour of the glass menagerie type of showrooms, and the result has been predictable. I shall be unsurprised if Honda worldwide fails to survive much longer

    • This is the sort of evidence rubbish that gave us brexit. Honda’s profits went up last year, not down. They are doing well, unlike brexit Britain.

      I use to believe in democracy, now I think we should ban all leave voters from voting.

      • And how does anyone know Honda wouldn’t have shut up shop in the UK even if we had voted to Remain? If there was no economic reason to be here, they would have just found another excuse.



        JUST FOUND ANOTHER EXCUSE… bit like AirBus have done .. ideal excuse to activate a long held covert plan … to move production to the mainland.

        However, they will still want to sell their stuff here to take advantage of much fatter UK margins… even BMW have admitted this! Not just the shed loads of 3-5-7 series etc they sell here, they’d shift production of their big MINIs from Cowley’s 2,500 robots at a stroke if they thought they could get away with still selling the shed loads here at fatter margins.

        Yet again for the umpteenth time.


        ALL OF ‘EM!

        Honda and some of the others warned about this many moons ago, nay decades even!

        Take one plant operating at half capacity now…. Yes SWINDON

        “Back in 2008, Swindon produced more than 230,000 cars annually, but with production of the Accord, plus the Jazz and CR-V, since moved elsewhere in the world, that number has nearly halved.” (Autocar)

        SINCE MOVED ELSEWHERE ….. How about that!

        …. That LONG BEFORE ANY MENTION OF IN-OUT votes.

        Still, altogether now, let’s blame you know what … that’s much better isn’t it…. Sorted.

  41. Long time ago now since I’ve seen a newly registered Honda product locally or anywhere. I see far more new-ish Chinese built MGs around now.

    I have purchased TWO new Honda Automotive products in the past. I have images of them and those used ones bought. Those new ones both still in good shape. Worth far more now than I paid for them new. Should have held onto them.

    I most definitely will not be buying another new Honda anytime soon. Much more likely I will buy a Chinese built MG though. It’s a way the lone small voice like me can demonstrate to the powerful Global players their business decisions are not always appreciated.

    Meantime, lets continue to run to form and get things … wrong. So, in that spirit, let’s all blame you-know-what… Yes, that’s it. Sorted….

  42. “The senior vice president of Honda Europe has warned that a no-deal Brexit would cost his company tens of millions of pounds.

    Ian Howells told the BBC that quitting the bloc without an agreement would affect the carmaker’s competitiveness in Europe.”

    “Like other carmakers in Britain, Honda only stores about an hour’s worth of components at its Swindon plant to keep costs down.

    Instead it relies on about 350 truckloads of parts that are delivered from the continent each day.

    Mr Howells said the loss of “frictionless trade” in this supply chain would harm its production output and competitiveness.

    “If we are shipping and competing against a European manufacturer in Europe, they are not incurring those tariffs,” he said. ”

    (BBC 18/9/2018)

    But it’s NOTHING to do with Brexit…

    Yeah, sure… Absolutely nothing…

    • TDX… how come Honda SWINDON is running at about half the capacity in recent years compared to ten years ago.

      Did I just imagine their decisions to move Accord and other model production outside the UK in the past decade or so.

      Go on… blame you know what. Part of some of this Nation’s desire to insist on getting things quite simply WRONG!

      Widespread Foreign Ownership of so called “British” Manufacturing, Transport, Infrastructure and other forms of asset stripping has been the quick-fix UK way to go since at least the Thatcher era. GO being the operative word.

      The only really surprising thing about HONDA being, like the “Diesel Good, Petrol Bad” VAG etc Bovine Excrement, that it has taken so long for the brown stuff to hit the fan.

      Taken so long … Yes! It was and will continue to be simply a matter of time for them all to be gone… when it suits them, not us.

      Simple, easy to follow diagrams are available for those where needed.

    • Honda Swindon relying “on about 350 truckloads of parts that are delivered from the continent each day”? A truck and a half arriving at Swindon every hour every day of the week, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? Time to offload each truck?

  43. Honda said this today:

    “We’re seeing unprecedented change in the industry on a global scale. We have to move very swiftly to electrification of our vehicles because of demand of our customers and legislation.

    “This is not a Brexit-related issue for us, it’s being made on the global-related changes I’ve spoken about.

    “We’ve always seen Brexit as something we’ll get through, but these changes globally are something we will have to respond to. We deeply regret the impact it will have on the Swindon community.”

    So there you have it from the horse’s mouth – nothing to do with Brexit. It is much the same with Nissan.

    The car industry is experiencing major change as we come to the end of the fossil fuel era and move towards electrification, as well as the decline in the consumerist culture which means people aren’t compulsively spending lots of money on credit as much.

    I’m getting tired of this ridiculous negativity over Brexit. Yes, it’s a big change and there will be lots to get through, but millions of people in this country took the decision to go that route and if I were one of them, I’d be getting very angry at the constant abuse and insults being thrown in my direction in the media by people who don’t agree with a democratic decision.

    Let’s think about clever ways we can get through this and the future we want to shape once the whole deal-making game with the EU has played out.

    • Indeed the motor industry is changing. However the UK leaving the EU at the same as the massive transformation sets in, leaves the UK as the weak link in Europe. No corporation will invest whilst there is uncertainty.
      I understand Honda has a world leading Hydrogen cell development centre at Swindon. Perhaps it was the company’s intention to build hydrogen cell powered vehicles in Swindon and they changed their mind after 23 June 2016?
      The present Honda models are not really important for Swindon, the future hi tech ones would have been post 2022.

    • What’s the point of being ‘Global Britain’ if it doesn’t put us in a better place to tackle global trends? As Honda notes, we’re on the cusp of large scale change in the automotive industry towards electrification. We have world class expertise in the U.K., a hardworking workforce, a not insignificant start in electrical vehicle design and production (Jaguar, Nissan) clearly showing – as Tesla does – that you don’t need to be based in the Far East to be viable in electric car development and production. We’re supposed to be gaining the flexibility which should make it easier for us to innovate. We should be an opportunity for Honda in this new environment, not a hindrance. It’s hard work encouraging investment (other than just buying up successes as happened with ARM in 2016) and either we’re rubbish at it – which clearly doesn’t bode well for the future – or businesses see through the Global Britain slogans to the reality of an unnecessary and incompetently enacted Brexit undermining business. If Honda’s decision is purely down to the factors they state it seems to have been made easier, not harder, by Brexit. Given the toxic tribalism around at the minute though I can’t blame them for not wanting to state as much, though. They’d lose more sales.

      • “incompetently enacted Brexit” – got it in three words, Chris. Thanks to Remainer May refusing to honour the verdict of the referendum.

        • Brexit champions had a shot at having a Leave-voting PM in 2016 – they blew it. They’ve had what should have been the most influential and powerful ministerial positions and have shown themselves to lack an understanding of our existing relationship with the EU let alone articulate anything cohesive as a future vision. They’ve been variously incompetent, ineffective and insulting. You’ve had your chances. Now I don’t really know what motivates May – it seems few people do – but the Conservative party is clearly a key part of her life and has been for decades. Risking the cohesion of that by being ‘maliciously incompetent’ seems highly unlikely. And she’s hardly refused to honour the verdict of the referendum – her red lines, Lancaster House speech etc. have been far closer to the thinking of her Brexiter MPs than those that championed Remain.

          • If I remember correctly, the referendum was a Tory party manifesto item in Cameron’s first government, something he – as a Remainer – abhorred. So he left it to as late as possible in his second term as PM, never thinking the result would be Leave – so he had not he slightest plan for the UK leaving the EU. Then he jumped ship, handing over to another Remainer: May. She has behaved like a frightened rabbit, given a job she is dead set against. Hence all the grovelling to Brussels and never standing up for the UK. The country was asked to vote. It did, but don’t blame those who voted Leave for the shambles the Cabinet as a whole has made of what should have been a series of Civil Service decisions on how Brexit was implemented. But the Civil Service never got the job; it has been patted around between ministers for over two years, and most of those ministers are Remainers of one sort or another. And this is supposed to be how the Mother of Parliaments goes about its business?

          • That’s an … interesting … version of history there Eric. ‘Left it as late as possible’ – 1 year into a 5 year term? ‘Handed over to another Remainer’ – you make it sound like May was anointed, a-la Michael Howard. The only reason a full leadership election didn’t take place in 2016 was because Leave-voting MPs who did put their names forwards dropped out through a mix of backstabbing and inability to go the distance. And there were plenty who didn’t even get that far. You’d think they’d have been jumping at the chance to see through a decision they’d been clamouring for for decades. Strange that they weren’t more enthusiastic. They had their chance. May has been careful to balance the cabinet between Remain and Leave voting MPs – reflecting the outcome of the referendum vote – and has given key Brexit-related posts on foreign affairs, trade and negotiating Brexit itself to Leave-supporting MPs. Again, they’ve had and blown their chance to steer proceedings.

            There are a couple of things we agree on. There is a very important role for the civil service in all of this although it is a surprise to hear a Leave-supporter claim that negotiations should have been left wholly to them and kept out of the hands of ministers. You do realise they are unelected bureaucrats? Also, you’re quite right that Cameron should have had a plan. He would then have been able to make holding the referendum conditional upon having a plan so that voters would have something agreed upon to vote for. He should have reached out to those who had been pushing for us to leave the EU for all those years and said ‘what’s your plan?’ so that they would know they were being listened to after so long claiming not to have been. This would have made it clear that, despite pushing for such a huge and disruptive change, they didn’t have a plan for how to carry it out. Again, on the face of it, it is bizarre that Leave supporting MPs didn’t demand engagement at that point – you’d think they’d want a mandate for their vision of a post-Brexit UK and therefore the approach to leaving (given the two are interrelated). Perhaps we should give them more credit for having the intelligence to recognise, as Dominic Cummins did, that not having a plan (and / or – more importantly – not publicising one) worked in their favour. Absent the scrutiny involved in developing one that had the potential to work they could promise whatever they liked.

            I do find it funny listening to Leave voters berating May for being too weak too. The implication is that the EU is a strong negotiator. You say ‘think of what we could have done if we’d involved our negotiating big hitters’. Think of what we could do if those big hitters collaborated with others in the EU instead of working against them.

          • Hullo Chris W. I did preface my reply with “If I remember correctly, the referendum was a Tory party manifesto item in Cameron’s first government,” I was wrong. And Clegg would never have formed a coalition with the Tories if Cameron had brought up a referendum in 2010. Boris Johnson’s attitude to the premiership has me lost; similarly that of Leave MPs who will not nail their colours to the mast. But May did not have to say yes to being PM; that was her choice, and she did vote to remain. I just do not trust her.

            I said the Civil Service should have produced a pro-UK Brexit plan because – elected or not (there is nothing magical about being elected) – drawing up documents is what it does.

            Where did you find in my 24 Feb reply: “You say ‘think of what we could have done if we’d involved our negotiating big hitters’?

            The EU is seen as a “strong negotiator” because it is being allowed to assume that role; with May on her knees to Juncker et al.

            Cameron’s failure to have a plan if the result went for leave is what is behind everything since the vote. All the uncertainty, the Brussels demands, May’s repeated ‘negotiation’ trips. He has made the UK look weak and stumbling. Perhaps that was his plan!

  44. Yes John H well said.

    To be fair to the Honda Motor Company of JAPAN, well over a decade ago their spokesperson advised when it suits their Japanese owners, they will up-sticks and GO.

    Those JAPANESE manufacturers based in the East Midlands and North Eat of England have also expressed similarly in the past. It is simply sound business decisions.

    The sooner the penny drops for those who Govern and Invest we entrust to this Nation’s longer term well being that like our world competitors in Germany, France, China, Japan, Italy, Spain and elsewhere that indigenous manufacturing matters, the sooner effective changes can be made to ensure well being in the future.

    If that means your next new BMW, AUDI, Mercedes, Honda, Toyota etc will cost a lot more here, so be it. British buyers, just as British products cost more in other parts of the world to protect their own local manufacturing, that will have to play a part in the decision and choice whether to buy home produce or not.

    Yes, as that local wealthy farmer with the large notice in the rear screen of his nice new BMW clearly states … SUPPORT BRITISH FARMING… You cannot make stuff up like that.

    • Logic says that if we slapped tarrifs on foreign made cars and demand for those cars in the UK remains high, manufacturers will have to consider setting up factories within the tarriff free area.

      This is effectively what led to Swindon being established in the first place. Now EU-Japan have a free trade agreement, Honda can make the cars in Japan and sell them into the EU for lower costs. Interestingly, the UK government supported that agreement at the time.

      Brexit will lead to a radical change of approach to where we get our goods from and who we sell them to. Not necessarily a bad thing, seeing as globalisation is failing and the growth-focussed economic system we’ve had since the 1930’s is coming to the end of sustainability.

      I think I’d rather be out of the system and able to operate independently to weather that storm!

  45. Yes John H, we will have to stop behaving like easy meat minnows in the Global Shark Infested commercial world. Long overdue and if that means buying UK product whenever possible, that will provide more essential employment, jobs and careers for the UK workforce.

    Rocket Science it aint although it appears to be to some here on this interesting exchange of views.

  46. One thing we should be thank Honda for is they kept British Leyland/ Rover alive a lot longer. Had Michael Edwardes not won agreement from Honda to supply engines and to assemble Honda based cars like the Triumph Acclaim, then the company could have gone under a lot faster. Also this deal with Rover raised the profile of Honda, which until the mid eighties was a minor player in Britain, and probably contributed to them building their factory in Swindon.

  47. Agreed Glenn, that partnership produced some fine production cars like the Rover 600. Honda did not have their own Diesel at the time and so Rover’s L-Series powered Honda’s Diesel Accord. It was a partnership, not a spiv-like cheap sell off takeover into alien control. A takeover which shafted the Honda partnership at a trice when the massively asset rich former Rover Group was sold off for little money to the Bavarian outfit.

    Another more local negative impact on the Honda up-sticks. That Honda plant on the former Gloster Aircraft Company Aerodrome I mentioned in an earlier post here. Now that aerodrome and factory is a large Industrial Estate and high density housing complex. Apparently that currently employs 600 folks in that Gloster based part of the Honda UK project. Those no doubt will go too if not already included in the published total loss of jobs.

    As a small by, several of my elderly relatives actually worked for the Gloster Aircraft Company … yes, the UK used to make its own planes.. and all the parts needed for the builds. How about that. Some of my relatives actually lived in a house on the edge of the Brockworth Aerodrome. Visits there in the early 1950s were always an event for ten year old me and my younger brother. We walked about and actually entered the assembly hangers on one visit… nobody about. That whilst the Nation’s premier all weather fighters were being assembled and readied for their maiden flights. I ventured up onto one of the ladder tressels and for a moment got my arm stuck in one of the cannon apertures in the leading edge of the delta wing. Imagine something like that happening today. We also witnessed some of those maiden flight take offs after what seemed like hours and hours of warming up those twin jet turbines… many yards of scorched earth behind those hot jet engines… deep cracks in the earth you could lose a leg down into. Then a short flight to the south of the city to land on the nearby Moreton Valance airstrip, now part of the M5’s dual carriageway. You can still see parts of that aerodrome’s runway and turning circle areas alongside the M5 on the northbound off ramp for Gloucester … Now M5 Junction 12 I believe.

    As a nine, ten and eleven year old boy, those Javelins and Meteors low over head in the Gloucester skies were a joy to see and hear. Including a sonic boom-boom or two before they were not allowed..

    Yes, we used to make some great stuff… in house and all by ourselves.

    Great days gorn forever. Sadly doubtful such like that will ever return.

    • Oh yes, the cars in the top brass car park at GAC aerodrome were a joy to my young eyes. Several Armstrong Siddeleys, a Bristol of two and a DB 2 or three…

      Where did it all go right …:-(

  48. @ Big John, the tie up with Honda was never a takeover as Austin Rover remained nationalised until 1988 and was then taken over by British Aerospace. It was more like a form of collaboration between two companies, one which wanted to recover from a disastrous period in the seventies and the other to grow their market share in Britain. Also having owned a Honda engined Rover 213, this was an extremely dependable car, very economical for its size, quiet, but also had the upmarket Rover interior inside and was built in Britain. I know it was based on a Honda, but Roverised for a British market and the SD3/ Rover 200 proved to be a big success for Rover when its Austin counterparts were struggling.

    • The SD3 Rover’s were very desirable back then, more so than Montego’s I think, that launched in the same year. The 216 EFi Vitesse was a flagship car (or the VDP?). They were one of the few Rover products I would have considered buying in the mid/late 80s.

  49. As previously posted by me Glenn, it was a partnership between ARG and Honda Motor Company.. no takeover involved. A partnership shafted by the cheap sell off to the Bavarian outfit.

    Moving swiftly on, in the run up to calling in the receivers at Longbrige back in 2005, unless it was news of the fake variety, some reports suggested the then Government torpedoed any chance of a partnership to enable the asset stripped remnants of the Rover Group known then as MG-Rover to survive. Now better placed to knowing how those we trust can behave behind closed doors, because it was then a privately owned company, they keenly pulled the plug shafting all the many thousands of brothers who relied on Longbridge for just about everything.

    Swindon, Sunderland and Burnaston have never and are unlikely to ever produce a vehicle that I would like to buy.

    However, there is one Honda I would most certainly buy…. this one… but, I would need to win the lottery to afford it.

    Mike Hailwood’s HONDA Six… turn the sound up…. 🙂


    I was in the paddock at Mallory Park’s race of the year in 1964 when Mike Hailwood’s mechanic fired up the SIX with me standing immediately behind it. BIG mistake, not just the assault to the ears, when the throttle was blipped the air vibrated in such a way that my lungs and the rib cage started to vibrate at very different frequencies. I felt they would separate! Scary and then some so I soon moved away.

    Hailwood led the race but retired with a puncture. Giacomo Agostini won on the equally magnificent sounding MV-Agusta.

    More great days gorn forever.

  50. I do worry now that the British car industry could undergo a similar shakeout to that which occured in the late seventies and early eighties when half of jobs were lost in the industry and production moved abroad. Then the arguments for this shakeout were clearer: falling market share for British made cars, industrial relations problems, low productivity and some truly awful products. Now, with the British car industry being highly productive, producing generally decent cars, and exports booming until recently, it would be a huge shame to see the industry decline again.

  51. I am worried that Honda leaving Britain, although the factory in Swindon has been run down from three models to one prior to Brexit and it’s cheaper to produce the Civic in Japan than Europe, could set a precedent. Ellesmere Port looks quite vulnerable, an ageing factory producing a single model that mostly uses parts imported from the EU, and I’m worried this could be next, as well as Ford running down its engine plants in favour of factories in Germany and Spain. Also while the others seem OK for now, what’s to say production is gradually moved to European factories, particularly BINI and JLR, who have factories in Germany and Slovakia.

  52. Of interest, factories moving abroad isn’t something that’s confined to Britain. Fiat now make the majority of their cars outside of Italy and Lancia is almost dead, killed by rust scares in the seventies and limited sales even in Italy. Similarly it’s pot luck where your Volkswagen comes from, it could be Germany, Poland, Spain or Slovenia, and even Mercedes now imports cars from Hungary and South Africa. The car industry is now a multinational business where production can be moved anywhere at short notice.

  53. Yeah but, yeah but Glenn…. let’s blame brexit anyway, or as I prefer to more accurately call it… sever the parasitical connection direct from UK Taxpayers to the Brussels Monster.

  54. My question would where is the steel made? Was the body of my my VW Fox made with Braziian steel?

    And what about the engine and gearbox? How many parts are shipped to a country with low labour rates, assembled and then shipped to the destination country.

    • Transport in industry is ridiculously cheap that it makes sense to ship raw materials or components to another country, use cheap labour to build a product, then ship it back to the same country from which the materials/components originated, all for less than the cost of producing the item in the material/component originating country!

      Not just cars, but all sorts of things – white goods, technology, even some food products!

      • Very true – with containerisation, shipping (I mean true shipping) costs have come down. But there is still the question of the quality of the raw materials – and the quality of the labour.

  55. Brexit just keeps giving, Porsche have just announced prices will rise by 10% in the event of a no deal departure. Allegedly to cover import tariffs. Other manufacturers will no doubt follow..

  56. How annoying. That’s the last straw. My loss. I shall immediately cancel my order for a new Porsche and buy something made in the UK Midlands instead.

    Those poor Porsche employees in Stuttgart will just have to live with it.

    So there. I feel sorry for those poor German folks. I blame brexit for buying British and thereby helping to secure more UK jobs and careers instead of exporting them to the mainland… there ought to be a law against people voting the way they did and if some get their way, there probably will be.

    John O U T.

    • If I’d known my Fox had been made in Brazil, would I still have bought it? My wife and I trusted “German build quality”!!!!

      • Eric there was a time when that “German build quality” had some validity. Much less so since most of the main German manufacturers successfully entered the volume car sector which was mainly occupied by GM and Ford product here in the UK and elsewhere up until about two decades or so.

        There was a time when little car mad boy me would run after a Mercedes, Auto Union or a BMW because they were such a rare sight on UK roads back in the 1950s. Now they are everywhere in the UK. They still make fine ordinary production cars but, no question, that build quality and component reliability has suffered since they successfully upped the volumes of production. On a recent MoT appointment I nearly tripped over a broken suspension spring. I asked what was that from. My friendly MoT tester pointed to a nice Mercedes which had failed MoT on a broken spring he found. There was a time that broken road springs were unheard of. Talking to him about the faults he finds on so called “premium” brands was a real eyeopener for me.

        The Japanese make some reliable cars. I have recovered two work colleagues Japanese cars with so called bullet proof engines. One of the penalties for work colleagues knowing “John you have a twin-axle braked trailer”. My “Always buys German” neighbour is convinced the reason my MGs and Rovers are so reliable is because of their Honda engines.

        Still, my real life experiences go against the grain of the “Foreign is best” brainwashing from years of prejudicial meejah myth purveying by the likes of everyone from Clarkson to the lowly ace reporter on site meejah Guy outside the gates of Longbridge whispering the “bruvvers” inside those gates are due to vote on Industrial action. For several weeks the same old meejah build up about that leaving viewers in no doubt how the bruvvers would vote. Then came the result. NO INDUSTRIAL ACTION! Then immediately back to the studio giving it the moving swiftly and up next treatment. Cue lots of smacked bum facial expressions in the meejah studio the likes of which I’ve only seen once since. That when David Dimbleby gave the result of the IN-OUT referendum..

        • Thanks, Big John, for that info. As for the NO INDUSTRIAL ACTION! – good news does not get reported. Take the most recent terrorist bomb to be exploded in Northern Ireland. No one injured or killed – JUST a car destroyed! So a few lines in a news report on page 6 or halfway through a news bulletin. And all a senior police officer could was “very irresponsible”!

  57. The car industry is completely multinational now. Even something as British as a Bentley is owned by Volkswagen and something that looks completely American like a Jeep Renegade is assembled in Italy. However, for all car manufacturers have shifted production around the world, the German car industry is still mostly owned by Germans, the Skoda I drive now is VAG underneath with engines and transmissions produced in Germany, and they don’t rely on the goodwill of the Japanese to keep their car industry alive.

    • The UK while in the EU has benefited greatly from multinationals setting up shop on our little island be they from Japan, USA or other parts of Europe.
      Obviously Foreign investment in the UK covers vastly more than the vehicle industry.
      Loosing Japanese companies in the UK will be tragic as they have a culture of being in it for the long term. Unlike the Americans who look to making a quick buck before making off. The Germans are somewhere in the middle although they put value on heritage.
      Post Brexit we’ll find out who wants to stay, relocate or sell.
      Looking at things another way…. Considering the uselessness of our politicians from all parties, perhaps we should buy some fresh talent in from the EU or further a field?

  58. Hey! How about we “Take back control” so that National Assets are owned and in the control of this Nation and not other Nations who will never have the UK’s best interests high on their list of priorities?

    More seriously, as more and more negative issues associated with foreign ownership and control come home to roost here those we entrust must finally get the message. Ideally quickly so best fix…. 🙂 An indigenous UK owned and controlled Industrial spine is essential in a healthy balanced economy. Neglect that and rely solely on shuffling papers and pressing keyboards in the City is not the way to go… correction it is. GO being the operative word. Look to the Japanese, Germans and the rest for evidence of why this has to be best policy. Because they all practice that and it works.

    The aura of change is increasing and ongoing. It is good to see the UNION FLAG on home produce product emphasising the importance of supporting home producers. That would be considered most un-pc in the harmfully pc-riddled UK environment only a few years ago. Yes, for things to improve we shall have to take a leaf out of the German and Japanese user manuals. It will also mean my “Always buys German” neighbour and millions of others of his mindset will just have to buy a British built Jaguar instead of that BMW, Mercedes and any of the rest. As he once told me “It’s all about choice John” … A Nation chose … decline. That has to stop … or. else.

    I’ve done my bit, the last four new cars I’ve personally bought and several more company supplied car choices were all chosen from the factories of Longbridge, Cowley and Abingdon. None gave me cause to regret those UK built choices… ever. By doing that here I have much in common with our friends on the mainland… particularly Germany and France who avidly support home product. Rightly so. Will we as a Nation ever learn. Jury still out on that judgement.

  59. I did hear on the news that PSA reckons Vauxhall has a secure future as it is profitable and popular in Britain. While this might not mean Ellesmere Port is safe, it does seem a more positive piece of news than that from Honda and Nissan. Also transferring some van production from France to Britain has been good news recently and I’m sure there’s still the capacity at Ellesmere Port for another car range like the Mokka, which is selling well over here.

    • Yes… I was pleasantly surprised to hear that positive comment from PSA too. Building the Mokka over here is an interesting idea Glenn. Vauxhall are promoting their range of SUV types a lot – just like every other manufacturer.

      • Also their ( Vauxhall ) TV commercials emphasise UK content. That would have been unheard of only a couple of years ago. I blame PC-overkill mainly for that. One Vauxhall TV commercial I saw very recently included something on the lines of..

        Manufacturing in the UK since 1903.

        Stressing the importance of these aspects of the economy is definitely on the increase. With the Union Flag prominently displayed on an increasingly wider range of produce.

        Buying foreign. Parked close to a lady with a new MG ZS nearby in the Supermarket Car Park today. Got talking and she told me she had to wait several months for it to arrive… from China. Nice shade of blue… one of my favourite more vibrant car colours to my eyes. My MG ZS bought new in 2003 is Trophy Blue. The Chinese version of blue on her new ZS was more like the old BMC Pageant Blue .. from memory. Nice colour. She also told me she usually bought Ford but the equivalent model in uncle Henry’s line up is nearly ten grand dearer. Surprised ti learn that. As we entered the shop she told me her Chinese MG ZS is the best car she’s ever had. It takes a lot of persuasion to wean folks away from the loyalty to a particular brand as many in retail will confirm.

        The steady increase in sales of Chinese MGs both locally and Nationwide I now suspect is mainly due to word of mouth endorsements. Advertising has been very low profile for Chinese MG here in the UK. So it looks like the steadily increasing sales of new MGs here in the UK is down to good word of mouth reviews… and competitive prices. Long way to go before Chinese ever approaching Ford sales here in the UK but, if the good word continues to make the rounds from owners, rather than relying on motoring meejah write ups, that increasing sales rate will surely continue.

        • I also owned a 2003 MG ZS in X Power grey (really enjoyed that car in 2.5 years of ownership). I remember Trophy blue colour well… nice. It’s funny seeing the MG ZS Moniker on a Chinese built SUV.

          • My MG ZS is mainly driven by my better half now who is one of the most un-car folks I know. She does like driving the ZS though. I get to drive it occasionally like a few weeks ago when she told me it makes a “funny noise” first thing in the morning when she drives off to work. I drove it and yes, seems the hand brake auto-adjusters stick on now and are slow to release the pads when the handbrake is released. Both rear Caliper Brake Pistons almost totally seized in their housings. Bought a pair of new Calipers and fitted those. British rubbish. Those original calipers only lasted a mere sixteen years… 😉 Note to self. Buy foreign next time. You know it makes sense.

            Always like to drive that MG ZS. Superb handling and some of the best brakes I’ve ever used on any ordinary production car.

            I was present at Snetterton when TV Stars Penny Mallory and Jason Plato et al ( including a much slimmer Mike “old aht yer ‘and” Brewer .. 🙂 were doing a tri-car Comparison TV programme “shoot out” which included the MG ZS. Got lots of images including a loud “CUT” when filming as my camera noisily rewound the film at the end of the 36 frames.. :-(… Plato later said the ZS was probably the best handling front-wheel-drive car he had driven. Tiffany Dell … 😉 also was complimentary about the ZS’s handling back then. Good enough for them, good enough for me. Got one soon after.

            Handling and brakes always high on my list of what a car “must have”.

  60. So very true. Despite numerous denials, FAKE NEWS and always looking to report the negative slant is alive not only in Trump’s USA, but alive, unwelcome and unwell within the UK meejah with their guaranteed revenue stream funded luvvies broadcasting organ in the spearhead of Fake News slant vending.

    Upcoming … moving swiftly on … etc…UK Meejah… Gercha-Cowsons as we used to say dahn the East End of old London Town. Not now. Londoners mostly now all gorn. Where did it all go right?

    They all need many more smacked bum facial scenarios. However, I’m now convinced there is no known cure for the vending of Fake News. The Meejah Class like most of the Westminster cushioned against reality types are too set in their Fake New slant ways. They really do believe they know better than the rest of us that do have to face the reality of the harsher effects of their quick fixes and failings year on year.

    I’m off to form the “Something has to be done” Party… Toot sweet as they say across La Manche.

    There again, some say we are seeing the effects of Global Warming which has created the fabulous weather here in the UK over the past few days. Could be. Nice to have it whatever the reason which I suspect is simply natural variance which has been going on for many many years. Mind you, they just couldn’t resist their fake news slants links to this superb weather rather than simply enjoy it…. whilst it lasts. I remember seeing snow on the nearby hills one June of the 1970s. 1975 was a superb hot sunny summer and the following year. 1976, topped that. 1976 three months of continuous sunshine with trees dying on the nearby Hills and very local butterflies leaving their special habitats desperately seeking sustenance by coming down from those dry hills seeking moisture in my garden. The like of which I have not seen before or since.

    I blame Brexit … 😉

  61. Had we been staying in the EU, we could have vetoed or threatened to veto the EU-Japan deal, subject to receiving assurances from Honda and Nissan that they’d stay…

    Being out of it helps us not muchly.

  62. The last bastion of the British motor manufacturing, Morgan, has just been sold to an Italian consortium.
    Back to Fiat engines then?

  63. I saw that. My grandfather who owned a three wheeler Morgan is doing circles in the sky. A majority sell-out by the family. No one interested in carrying on with the busness?

    • Same old story. Who needs to invest in UK manufacturing. Far too much like work that.

      Better to sell off to asset strippers take money and run. Meantime keep shuffling papers and pressing keyboards in the city. Only fools and horses work.

      You know it makes sense… to some. That’s the real problem.

      Those foreigners who value their indigenous manufacturing, support it in every way and at every level will be sorry. They have got it all wrong. Mark my words.

  64. NeilB,

    Yes read that elsewhere. That really completes the total demise of what some here and elsewhere still laughingly describe as “our” Motor Industry. As I look out of my Bedroom Window, I can see the Malvern Hills close to where the Morgans are made and have been for many decades. I used to work in Malvern. When I drive past, I have several relatives in the area, I will be sadly reminded of the now complete and total extinction of “our” Motor Industry.

    Where did it all go right.?

    • All we can hope is they stay close to the Malvern Hills rather than move close to the Dolomites.
      As is usual after 3 or 4 generations of family ownership, UK businesses pass into foreign hands.

      • It’s not just a British thing. Spain and the Czech Republic’s national carmakers have long been owned by Volkswagen, Volvo is owned by the Chinese, Fiat owns half of Chrysler, Daewoo has long been part of General Motors. The nature of the car industry is largely multinational now.

  65. Explored the Dolomites many Moons ago looking for and assessing rare butterfly populations. Beautiful Hills and mountains as are the Malverns. Best leave Morgan production in those UK not EU Hills.

    Sadly selling off the Nation’s “Family Silver” as a very good ex-UK Prime Minister warned Thatcher, was not wise policy in the longer term for the Nation. Matter of time and the Nation is now reaping the negative benefits of those quick-fix sell offs. Clearly not all UK politicians have myopic short term quick fixes. Only most of them. Some actually look beyond that…they are also an endangered species as was “our” Motor Industry. It is not endangered now, it is extinct!

    Someone once said.. When it suits them, not the UK, they will be gone. Guilty M’Lud. Fair doos to Honda and the others for their honestly telling us that many years ago. Now coming to pass.

    Still lets bury our heads ever deeper in the sand and blame you know what. Sorted!

    It’s what we do or allow to happen far too often and for far too long. It must stop.

  66. And a BIG difference that would have made like all the others we had snuffed out decade on decade when a succession of our PMs tried to change things.

  67. Not mentioned much, but there was a big contraction in car production in the noughties when Rover went under and Ford and Peugeot stopped making cars in the UK, as well as Vauxhall closing Luton and moving the Vectra to Germany. It was near enough the end of the traditional big four making cars over here and all done well before leaving the EU was even on the agenda.
    It does seem to me car production has periodic shakeouts in the UK, such as in the mid seventies to early eighties, the noughties and now, but the industry always seems to pull through and come back. However, could we see such well respected British brands as Mini and Land Rover be moved to the EU in a hard Brexit?

  68. Five years today, June 23rd 2016 the day of the Brexit Referendum when the electorate turned against the elected.

    • To read a load of politically & economically illiterate right wingers were tricked into voting against their own interests by a small amount of billionaire tax dodgers & old money upper class twits who didn’t get the memo that the British Empire is not longer around.

      • Drivel ; if you should ever acquire the ability to write intelligible English perhaps you will let us know what you actually meant

        • Thanks for showing us your ignorance!

          How do you know it is drivel if if cannot understand it?

      • A pity you do not write under your own real name. The “British Empire [was] no longer around” when I served as a regular soldier in the UK, BAOR and the Middle East. It was no longer around when I worked as a civilian in Africa, improving the lot of the average local African. It was no longer around when the Falkland Islands were invaded by a foreign aggressor, who was repelled and the islands recovered for their legitimate residents. It was no longer around when British troops and others endeavoured to restore order to a number of Middle East countries. Nor when the European Economic Community had become the imperialistic European Union, with presidents and other officials who indeed see themselves as members of the latest empire to rule Europe. We democratically chose to leave it.

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