Gathering to celebrate 40 Years in Business for M-Sport Managing Director Malcolm Wilson OBE, staff at the Cockermouth-based motorsport company are also looking to the future with work on a state-of-the-art Evaluation Centre at the Dovenby Hall Estate now entering its final phase.
The multi-million-pound development includes a 2.5 kilometre test track which was completed in 2017. Designed to FIA standards, the track includes a 750 metre straight, 70 metre low friction area, steady state cornering pad and a variety of corners to best test the latest motorsport and automotive technologies.
Work has now also begun on the self-contained workshop and conference centre that will complete the unique venue – a new 10,723 m2 space enabling M-Sport to attract mainstream manufacturers seeking a high-tech engineering facility to design and test bespoke products and technologies.
The project was made possible with investment from the UK Government’s Regional Growth Fund (RGF), as well as Growth Fund investment provided by Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (CLEP) – allowing M-Sport to develop a one-of-a-kind facility in the UK and ensuring Cumbria plays its part to boost local economy, skills and innovation within the region of the Northern Powerhouse.
M-Sport Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE, said:
“When I started the company 40 years ago, I never dreamt it would expend into what it is today. I never thought we would outgrow Dovenby Hall, but here we are in the midst of building the M‑Sport Evaluation Centre – a centre of excellence for engineering design and development that will grow the business while safeguarding 200 skilled jobs and creating a further 100.
“It’s always been important for me to keep the business in Cumbria, and with investment from Cumbria LEP we’re able to expand on the success we’ve achieved over the years. Creating a one-of-a-kind facility that is unique in the United Kingdom, the M-Sport Evaluation Centre will allow us to provide an exclusive facility where world leaders in automotive technology can follow their concepts from design and development, right through to production.”
Chair of the Investment Panel at Cumbria LEP, Jim Jackson, said:
“Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership is committed to supporting economic growth across the region and we’re delighted that this £1.3 million investment from the Government’s Local Growth Fund will drive M-Sport’s exciting expansion plans and encourage inward investment in Cumbria.
“The Evaluation Centre will help M-Sport take advantage of new opportunities in areas such as renewable energy, creating local jobs, and bringing in further motorsport and engineering excellence, with an overall investment impact in terms of Gross Value Added (GVA) to Cumbria estimated to be £24.4m by December 2025.
“The CLEP wishes to send its congratulations to M-Sport on their 40-year anniversary and their world‑leading, award-winning achievements to date. The future in terms of motorsport, engineering and innovation is fantastic for Cumbria and we wish them every success.”