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Tuesday, 22 May, 2001, 19:15 GMT 20:15 UK
Car factory plan rolls on
Rolls-Royce cars
Rolls-Royce cars are likely to be built in West Sussex
Rolls-Royce has been given approval for plans to build a new assembly plant in West Sussex, creating up to 350 jobs.

Councillors in Chichester passed the scheme, which will now be considered by the Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions.

The factory near the old Goodwood motor racing track will make 1,000 cars a year.

It is being built by the German company BMW, which is taking over the Rolls-Royce brand from Volkswagen.

To help merge in with the countryside, the plant will be partly sunk below ground level and its roof will be covered with moss.

BMW HQ
BMW's headquarters in Germany
BMW will assemble cars there from parts made at factories across Europe.

Councillors were recommended by officials to approve the application for planning permission. They voted 33-six in favour of the move.

Rolls-Royce cars have been built at Crewe in Cheshire for 50 years.

The 2,500 workers there are to continue making Bentleys for the owners Volkswagen and their jobs are considered safe.

It is only the Rolls-Royce name which is being transferred from Volkswagen to BMW.

Goodwood will be Rolls Royce's new headquarters and will produce a new model to be launched in 2003.

The Goodwood site was chosen ahead of other locations near the M40 including Cowley in Oxford.

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See also:

30 May 00 | Business
Glorious Goodwood for Rolls factory
30 May 00 | Business
BMW builds new Rolls factory
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