Coventry taxi maker LTC resumes production after a year

image captionMore than 130,000 taxis have been made at the site

Full-scale production of black cabs will restart next week in Coventry, the Chinese firm Geely has said.

Taxi-maker London Taxi Company (LTC), which used to be known as LTI, went into administration in October 2012 and was bought by Geely six months ago.

Of the 176 employees at the Holyhead Road plant, 99 lost their jobs.

Geely has said it would try to re-employ as many former workers as possible.

For the past year, the remaining workforce of 77 has been repairing vehicles.

"Solid future"

Peter Johansen, vice president of Geely UK's black cab operation, said: "Customers are already responding to us being back in business.

"We've taken orders for 200 vehicles to Saudi Arabia and another 200 vehicles to Australia."

Li Shufu, chairman of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, said it had ambitious plans for the business and would build a "solid future" for the company.

In January the MP for Coventry South, Jim Cunningham, put down an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons calling for production of the London black cab to remain in the city.

Pete Coulson, from the union Unite, said: "There is a lot of excitement for the workforce in terms of what the future holds, and not just the workforce but the city as a whole.

"It's good for the economy, good for the city and even more so for those who were made redundant and now get the opportunity to re-engage within the skills they already know."

More than 130,000 black taxis have been made at the site over the past 60 years.

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