Bentley Motors has resumed production at its headquarters in Crewe, with more than 1,700 employees following 250 comprehensive and wide-ranging hygiene and social distancing guidelines.
This is the next stage of Bentley’s ‘Come Back Stronger’ programme – a phased production ramp up following a Coronavirus shutdown.
Last week staff received an insight into their new working patterns, operations and environment during socially distanced briefing and training sessions.
They returned to a redesigned manufacturing facility that allows two-metre distance between workers, and one-way movement paths and traffic flows. Even the washrooms across site have been reconfigured to reduce the number of people being able to use them.
From this week, Bentayga and Mulsanne production lines will resume, followed by the Continental GT and Flying Spur line next week.
On each line, production will be running at approximately 50% capacity for a number of weeks. The 500 other remaining workers could return by the middle of June based on current assumptions and government guidance.
Safety measures include the compulsory wearing of face masks in all factory and office areas, while Bentley will maintain a work from home policy for those who are able to.
Personal protection equipment, including face masks, gloves, goggles, are provided as necessary, as well as health temperature checks for staff. There is also an enhanced cleaning routine and clear guidance to the workforce on limiting the risk of infection.
In relevant office areas and catering facilities where distancing is more challenging, plastic partitions – designed and manufactured by Bentley workers – now offer segregation between colleagues in addition to control measures limiting capacity, staggered times and distanced seating.
“Now is the right time for the business to come back stronger,” said Adrian Hallmark, Chairman and CEO, Bentley Motors.
“We have introduced extensive new working measures to protect our colleagues, our families and our customers and we are confident, following the work of so many people, that being at Bentley will be as safe for our colleagues as being anywhere else.
“We have a strong order bank, around eight months of customer orders to manufacture, established parts supply routes and patient customers who are looking to receive their extraordinary cars as soon as possible.
“We will ramp up in a controlled, measured way to ensure we manage this continued demand, and look ahead and in spite of this interruption continue on our journey to lead sustainable luxury mobility in the future.”