Tony Pedder
Mark Lane

Member Article

Sheffield sits as engine for UK manufacturing rebirth

Sheffield Forgemasters chairman Tony Pedder has said the spirit of positive legacy from previous generations has helped position Hallamshire as the engine for the UK’s manufacturing rebirth.

Mr Pedder was talking at the 377th Cutlers’ Feast last week with special guest Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe QPM, Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis.

He claims Hallamshire, which historically encompasses the current city region, outshines the rest of the UK as a centre for manufacturing excellence because of its unique heritage, expertise and world-class facilities.

Current Cutlers Company senior warden, Mr Pedder, said: “Because of our legacy, we manufacturers in Hallamshire don’t see today’s economic travails as a burning platform. We see them as a trigger to harness a burning desire.

“A desire, given the right climate, for Hallamshire to be the engine for the UK’s manufacturing rebirth, and to thereby continue to honour our legacy and pass it on to future generations.

“We can build on our two great universities, who are increasingly reaching out to support business, and we can build on our outstanding companies, who are poised to grow further, particularly in global markets.”

“This remains a difficult time for our economy. The issues are complex and extend beyond our borders. However, we have to drive solutions to move us forward quickly now.

“To move forward, from the effective five plus years of stagnation we seem almost becalmed in and to avoid our legacy for the next generation being one of massive debts and worklessness.

“I believe that reversing the steady trend of decline, over many years, in manufacturing’s share of our GDP is one of the solutions needed. And with a clear, focussed, consistent political commitment to create the right environment nationally, manufacturing can meet that challenge, and nowhere more so than here in Hallamshire.”

He added that the Cutlers Company’s beliefs and principles of getting people in Hallamshire working together, promoting quality, skills and hard work, and creating an industry to compete with the best, were still very relevant to today’s business world.

Mr Pedder and Forgemasters’ chief executive Professor Graham Honeyman have been key in tabling manufacturing issues with MPs and key civil servants and garnering high levels of respect within industry.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Mark Lane .

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