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Goodyear closure: Demolition of iconic Wolverhampton factory could begin next month

Wolverhampton | Property | Published:

Bulldozers are set to move in to knock down the former Goodyear factory buildings next month.

The view of Goodyear along Bushbury Lane in August 2016

The plans, submitted to Wolverhampton council, could see the former factory buildings begin to be demolished on July 1.

It is expected that those workers that continue to operate at the site will still be at work during the demolition, until July 20.

The demolition, if approved, will formally bring to a start the preparations to build more than 200 homes at the site. Developers St Mowden have submitted the plans.

According to the application form, the demolition will “facilitate future development” and will see the site “levelled and cleared site, secured as appropriate.”

Cyril Barrett, chairman of the Unite branch at Goodyear said: “This is absolutely heartbreaking it really is.

“It is genuinely the end of an era. Goodyear was in its heyday, truly iconic and I know its presence will be missed by all those who worked there over the years.

“Goodyear played such an important role in the city, so much so that communities sprang up around the factory so that workers could walk to work.

“For example, in the Low Hill area there is even an avenue called Goodyear Avenue because it was the prime location for workers at the factory to live there.”

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St Modwen has also submitted plans to start a new phase of development at the site off Bushbury Lane, including the construction of a further 230 homes.

Mr Barrett continued: “It’s really saddening to hear that it’s all coming to and end like this. The remaining workers will still be there until July 20 to help remove some of the machinery and pick the meat of the bones, as it were.

“I know it will be sorely missed by people who still think of Goodyear as a major part of city life.”

No-one from Planning Prospects Ltd, agent acting on behalf of the developers, was unavailable to comment on the plans for the demolition.

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The Wolverhampton site was once the European headquarters for the US tyre giant, occupying a half-mile stretch of Stafford Road and making tyres for cars, trucks, tractors and Formula 1 racing cars.

Workers marked the end of an era in December as the last order was met at the huge plant in Bushbury Lane and they walked out of the gates for the final time.

Councillors will make the decision over former factory building by June 29.

Jessica Labhart

By Jessica Labhart
@JLabhart_star

Reporter for the Express & Star, primarily covering Wolverhampton.

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