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Last Updated: Friday, 4 November 2005, 16:58 GMT
Investment plan to safeguard jobs
Egger plant
Glimpse of the future - what the new computer room might look like
The chipboard manufacturer Egger UK is a step closer to a 100m expansion at its Northumberland production plant.

The company which employs 460 people in Hexham has been given planning permission by the Government Office North East.

The expansion plans include a state-of-the-art production line, a computer room and new landscaping to improve the plant's image.

Austrian-owned Egger UK said the improvements would safeguard jobs.

The firm, which produces wood-based chipboard panels, said it hopes to see a cluster of self-supporting timber and forestry companies created to provide more employment and generate income for the area.

'Full potential'

Northumberland County Council welcomed the announcement and said it would help safeguard the future economy of the area.

County Council leader Councillor Bill Brooks said: "It is a significant step forward for employment prospects.

"The Egger plant is a major employer in rural Northumberland, which contributes around 180m to the region's economy.

"It also plays a key part in the wider forestry industry which employs many more people and could be even bigger.

"For Egger to re-invest on this scale will be a major boost to the county's economy and we hope to continue to work with them to achieve their full potential and secure their contribution to the forestry industry."


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