Ford could pull out of Liverpool if Halewood leisure centre is built 0

Ford is threatening to pull out of the city of Liverpool if a £30 million leisure is eventually built near to them.

Liverpool City Council have ignored protests from some of the public and Ford and decided to go ahead with the development. There will be 325 permanent jobs created with the development being built by Benmore, a Belfast based company.

Graham Edwards – Ford will be damaged

Ford’s European Transport Operation Manager, Graham Edwards has said that any developments would affect Ford’s business in a damaging fashion. The City planning committee may take a new view as Ford has consequently threatened to leave the City.

Bill Verinder – Ford will leave

Bill Verinder, a member of the Unite union said that Ford will leave the city as they cannot continue with such a huge disruption. He said “If this goes ahead, Ford will do their best to pull out of here because their operation cannot continue. They are going to require more storage in future, not less.”

The new leisure centre

If the development does go ahead, Benmore have claimed that 400 construction jobs will go ahead. They will directly interfere with Ford’s business during development by using a section of a storage facility used by Ford. Benmore have offered another piece of land to use in the meantime but Ford have since rejected that proposal.

The site itself will contain a massive seven screen cinema, a 78 bed hotel around a 15 acre site and 18 commercial units. On top of this, a 120 bedroom hotel along with a 78 bedroom hotel and an extra three commercial units are also up for consideration.

Peel, a construction company based within the city have said that the proposed development will also hamper their ambitions too.

David Burrows – Defending the project

David Burrows who is the Chief Executive of the Benmore Group has spoken out saying that everything should be completed as soon as next year. He said “We are committed to working with all stakeholders to ensure this project is delivered on time and on budget, with minimum disruption to existing businesses using the site and maximum benefit to the people of Speke Garston,”

As the land in question is located within an industrial zone the Government must intervene and approve any work, so there could be hope for Ford.

This is certainty a very complicated dispute which could yet be resolved.