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Hybrid Air Vehicles and the City of Doncaster Council agree terms on flagship production site for Airlander 10

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The City of Doncaster Council and Hybrid Air Vehicles Ltd have agreed to locate the production programme for Airlander 10, the world’s most efficient large aircraft, at Carcroft Common.

Carcroft Common is a 50-hectare site identified by the City of Doncaster Council for development to unlock new economic growth. The freehold for the site will be acquired by Hybrid Air Vehicles under the terms of the agreement.

Hybrid Air Vehicles will now initiate activities leading towards a planning application, working with the local community and other stakeholders as part of the planning and preparation process.

Subject to planning approval, Hybrid Air Vehicles will develop new flagship facilities for Airlander 10’s production, testing, and certification operations, capable of producing up to 24 aircraft per year at the site. It will house cutting-edge aerospace production equipment, such as new assembly lines for Airlander’s composite-based airframe, propulsion systems, and electrical and avionics systems.

Airlander 10 is a new type of ultra-low emissions aircraft capable of carrying 100 passengers, or ten tonnes of payload. The reserved orderbook for Airlander 10 stands in excess of £1bn, with the first aircraft set to enter service from 2028 with the likes of Air Nostrum Group, the launch airline customer.

In partnership with the City of Doncaster Council, Hybrid Air Vehicles will establish Carcroft Common as a hub for advanced manufacturing and sustainable aviation in South Yorkshire, creating over 1,200 new jobs and thriving supply chains. Hybrid Air Vehicles will also work closely with important regional partners like the University of Sheffield’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, and the Doncaster UTC.

The announcement marks important progress toward the City of Doncaster’s Economic Strategy 2030, and the success of the South Yorkshire Investment Zone, which is focused on advanced manufacturing.

The Carcroft Common site is part of the Investment Zone, launched by the Chancellor of Exchequer in July 2023, which aims to improve investment through planning, development, and skills support.

In February 2024, the City of Doncaster Council and South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority published ambitious plans for South Yorkshire Airport City, re-opening Doncaster Sheffield Airport alongside a focus on new green advanced manufacturing and sustainable industrial innovation, including Hybrid Air Vehicles investment into Carcroft Common.

The announcement of a production site builds on a previous agreement with the Mayor of Doncaster and the Mayor of South Yorkshire, Oliver Coppard, in March 2023. Underpinned by a £7m investment by the region, this included a commitment to collaborate on skills and supply chain development.

Hybrid Air Vehicles Ltd CEO Tom Grundy, said: "Airlander 10 will transform what’s possible for sustainable air travel, and Carcroft Common will deliver the flagship production centre we need to do that, creating over 1,200 jobs and a £1bn per annum export.

"Our vision to rethink clean flight has been met with robust support at every step of the way by City of Doncaster Council and South Yorkshire region. We look forward to working closely with the community as we launch our production programme and progress this extraordinary project."

Steve Foxley, CEO of the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre, added: "Hybrid Air Vehicles choosing to base its production of Airlander 10 in our region is a big moment for South Yorkshire and one to be proud of. This investment not only brings high-value jobs and new supply chain opportunities but it marks a strong signal of confidence in advanced manufacturing and the new South Yorkshire Investment Zone.

"The AMRC has worked closely with Hybrid Air Vehicles since 2021 on research linked to its Airlander 10 programme, bringing together our expertise on low emissions propulsion, large composite structures and supporting manufacturing technologies.

"To have Hybrid Air Vehicles putting its production footprint in South Yorkshire is a real boost to the region’s capability and reputation, helping to grow our green manufacturing cluster, and building on the research and development that is being led by the wider University of Sheffield into sustainable air travel, energy, and how we transition to a low-carbon economy."