Thousands of jobs expected as a world-renowned Scottish engineering site reopens

An engineering firm run by father and son Dougie and Fraser Gibson has revealed ambitions to take the workforce at a “world-renowned” site in Glasgow to more than 5,000 over the next decade.

Gibson’s Engineering, which manufactures, maintains and repairs trains, said today that it is “extremely proud” to announce the opening of its new engineering facility at St Rollox railway depot in Springburn, Glasgow.

He declared: “Known locally as ‘The Caley’, this important historic site is set to play a key role in preserving and building on Scotland’s rich railway engineering heritage. It is the largest railway manufacturing, maintenance and repair depot in Scotland, and the second largest in the UK.”

The company said the re-opening of the Glasgow facility will “create employment opportunities for engineers, coach builders, project managers and apprentices, with the aim of expanding Gibson Engineering’s workforce to over 1,000 employees over the next five years and 5,000 are expected in the next five years. 10 years”.

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He noted that the site’s skilled workforce would build new trains, maintain existing fleets and carry out repairs, such as accident damage and vehicle restoration.

Gibson’s Engineering said: “The depot will be a one-stop shop for train manufacturing, maintenance and repair, ensuring the seamless operation of light and heavy rolling stock. St Rollox intends to have a fully electrified railway from its buildings to the main line, between Glasgow and Edinburgh, and is the only active wheel shops facility in Scotland.”

He added that the engineering facility will “allow the site to once again play a significant role in transforming the railway engineering industry in the UK for the next few years and beyond.”

Gibson Engineering claimed that its directors and management team had more than 300 years’ experience in rail transport engineering, and a “reputation for innovation, reliability and craftsmanship”.

Fraser Gibson, managing director of Gibson’s Engineering, said: “This is great news for Scotland, which has a proud heritage and a proud tradition of railway manufacturing, maintenance and repair. It is full of hope and Dougie and I are excited to work with our team to fully implement the facility, and to make ‘The Caley’ once again the success it has been for over 160 years. “

Gibson Engineering noted that after the depot was closed in 2019 by an investment fund, businessman David Moulsdale bought the facility in 2021 and had “a vision to revitalize this landmark as a train engineering depot”.

He added: “David has already invested over £10 million including the purchase price of the facility, the refurbishment and ongoing maintenance of the buildings.”

Mr Moulsdale said: “I was born and raised just three miles from ‘The Caley’. I vividly remember the enormous impact this unique engineering feat had on me, the Greater Glasgow Area and the wider Scottish community.

“I am extremely confident that our ambition to see the employment of many more engineers, coach builders, project managers and apprentices in the north of Glasgow will be realised. ‘The Caley’ and the Scottish economy.”

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Lord Jack McConnell, former first minister of Scotland and chairman of the McConnell International Foundation, said: “The Caley has a proud heritage in railway engineering and is part of Scotland’s industrial DNA. I am excited to see Gibson Engineering bring their experience and expertise to this famous location in the heart of Glasgow, with the hope of thousands of new skilled jobs in the coming years.

“I’m very proud of Scotland’s history as a center of engineering excellence, so it’s great to see ‘The Caley’ reopen as a major train manufacturing, maintenance and repair facility. David Moulsdale is to be commended for his brave support of the this venture and I wish it all the best.”

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Three-time Scottish Formula One world champion Sir Jackie Stewart said: “Growing up close to Glasgow, I was always proud of the city’s reputation for engineering expertise, and Caley was at the forefront of that. By reopening the site, David Moulsdale and the team at Gibson’s Engineering are breathing new life into Scotland’s train manufacturing sector. I wish them all the best in this new venture, as it goes from strength to strength.”

Professor Sir Jim McDonald, principal of Strathclyde University and president of the Royal Academy of Engineering, said: “Engineering, technology and entrepreneurial spirit underpin Scotland’s innovation and progress, and have done so for centuries. Glasgow and the west of Scotland in general are experiencing an engineering renaissance in a variety of areas including manufacturing, energy, aerospace and many others.

“This increases the opportunity for Gibson Engineering to influence the industrial landscape and further advance railway engineering while helping to preserve Scotland’s rich heritage. I commend David Moulsdale and the Gibsons for their vision and commitment to driving this ground-breaking project.”

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