Burnley tooling facility launch draws international audience

Kaman company directors flew in from American headquarters to officially open their new UK state-of-the-art Tooling Centre of Excellence, which has been purpose built on Burnley’s unique new aerospace supply park, Innovation Drive.

[caption id="attachment_42580" align="f-align-medium-right f-align-center" width="300"]Gordon Birtwistle MP,  Council leader Julie Cooper,  Jim Larwood, president KAS, Mark Podmore, MD Kaman Tooling UK Gordon Birtwistle MP, Council leader Julie Cooper, Jim Larwood, president KAS, Mark Podmore, MD Kaman Tooling UK[/caption]

The new facility houses the largest 20 meter, 5 axis CNC gantry machine in Europe which was showcased at the grand opening to local dignitaries and businesses who attended the event.

The purpose-built 34,000 sq ft facility, constructed by local developers Barnfield Construction, was designed and equipped to meet the increased size requirements of modern aircraft structures assembly tooling, including a new 20 meter 5 axis CNC milling machine capable of machining the largest aerospace tools, and a 6 meter coordinate measuring machine used for advanced and complex high-precision digital inspection.

The Tooling Center of Excellence will also be one of the few in the UK equipped with a state-of-the-art design suite for enhanced design and manufacturing.

The opening of the new facility will create a number of new jobs in the next two years as Kaman continues its relocation from its former UK location at Darwen to Burnley’s Innovation Drive.

“The site will continue to expand, and will increase to 64,000 square feet in 2015, creating up to 50 new jobs,” said Mark Podmore, managing director of Kaman Tooling Ltd., part of the Aerosystems Division of Kaman Aerospace.

Council leader Julie Cooper addressed the guests: “ I’m delighted to welcome Kaman as the first company onto Innovation Drive, moving into the impressive address of No. 1 Innovation Drive.

“I’m delighted to see the transformation of the former Michelin site on which Kaman now sits, which has come about through close partnership work between the council and the private sector.

“Burnley has a reputation for getting things done , and I’m so proud that just 12 months down the line from Innovation Drive’s inception, to be standing here in this superb advanced manufacturing facility, on time and on budget. “Burnley sits at the heart of the world’s fourth largest aerospace cluster. Our strength is in advanced manufacturing and our vision is to make Burnley a regionally significant centre for advanced manufacturing. To achieve this it is important we create modern business environments, which will attract companies to choose Burnley, just as Kaman have."