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    NAA Update. Robert Llewellyn returns for 2019 NAA Awards! – positive industry news amongst frustrating Brexit delays

    It’s official – Robert Llewellyn will be returning again as the Master of Ceremonies at this year’s NAA Annual Awards Dinner!! Robert is perhaps best known as the presenter of Channel 4’s Scrapheap Challenge, but has also had an impressive range of media roles working as a comedian, writer and actor (Kryten in Red Dwarf!)…

    Most recently, he has presented the highly successful Fully Charged series on YouTube about electric vehicles. Combining all of these hats last year, Robert stole the show, presenting with a combination of wit and automotive context. 

    The 2019 NAA Awards Dinner again promises to be the most entertaining automotive event in the calendar, and a fantastic networking opportunity not to be missed. I would recommend booking your table or tickets now, with the Early Bird offer closing at the end of May. I also recommend that you start thinking about the Award you are going to apply for this year! More information about the Awards Dinner can be found here.

    This past month has seen some positive news for the UK automotive industry, amongst a continual stream of negative Brexit-related press and uncertainty.  Toyota announced that it is to build a new hybrid electric vehicle in the UK for Suzuki, the manufacture of which is expected to start towards the end of 2020. The hybrid will be based on Toyota’s Corolla model and made at its Burnaston plant in Derbyshire, with engines supplied by the company’s Deeside factory in North Wales. Fantastic news for the automotive sector, and for the circa 3,200 UK Toyota employees.

    With regards to Brexit, SMMT Chief Executive, Mike Hawes, summarised the latest developments to extend the timeframe further, with a statement we can all fully get behind. He said “Government and Parliament must use this extension purposefully to take ‘no deal’ off the table for good, and guarantee a positive long-term resolution that delivers frictionless trade. If they fail, we face yet another devastating ‘no deal’ precipice on 31 October.” For more information on how Brexit will affect your company, please look at the BEIS automotive primer, which aims to bring together in one location the top 3-5 automotive specific issues and provide guidance.

    In other positive industry news, the government has finally given the official green light for the £16m NMCL programme, a competitiveness and productivity initiative for over 100 automotive manufacturers to gain support through training, coaching, mentoring and consultancy. For more information please see our NMCL article here, or direct any enquiries to Steve Collins (

    In this month’s collaboration piece, there is an exciting new opportunity for your company to exhibit at the 2019 Advanced Engineering Fair (30-31 October) as part of a Northern Powerhouse collaborative stand with DIT, the NEAA and the NAA and a selection of their respective members. At £2,000 this is a 50% reduction of the normal cost. There is also the opportunity for SME companies, who are based in the North West, to get a further £1,000 off through ERDF grant funding. For more information please see our dedicated article here Link to Advanced Engineering Event, or contact me directly (

    And for those of you attending Automechanika this year, I strongly recommend you consider attending the SMMT’s Meet the Buyer for your opportunity to speak directly with major OEM/Tier 1 buyers – express your interest in participating here.

    To register for our upcoming events please follow the links below, you never know just what you might get from one, as our story about a new business partnership that was formed between two NAA members at one of our events shows! Link to NGS/Melo networking sucess

    • Ready for Electrification? (Hartree Centre, Daresbury, 22nd May) Link to Event
    • Training Hub Launch (Gefco, Speke, 6th June) Link to Event
    • Printing the Future (FDM, Burnley, 18th June) Link to Event
    • The Journey to Predictive Maintenance (Webinar, 25th July). Save the date!  Link to follow next month. 

    To finish, we welcome the following new members since our last newsletter:

    • AMRC NW
    • Irish Pressings
    • Mergon International

    We look forward to networking with each of you at our events this year.


    European Regional Development Fund Northern Powerhouse
    Partners Department for Business Innovation and Skills Finance Birmingham