Boeing, the aircraft, rocket and satellite manufacturer, has announced plans to open its first ever European factory in Sheffield, northern England today.

As the UK prepares for Brexit, Boeing’s decision is an encouraging sign for the country’s manufacturing sector.

“Our decision to start manufacturing high-value components in the UK is a step-change in our engagement and a further example of Boeing’s commitment to grow here,” the company’s Europe president Michael Arthur said in a statement.

The $25m, 25,000 square-foot facility will supply parts for Boeing’s 737 and 777 aircraft.

If planning permission is granted, the site could be up and running by late next year, initially employing around 30 people.

Boeing currently employs 2,000 people in Britain, but all of them are in non-manufacturing roles.

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The Rotherham-Sheffield border already boasts a Rolls Royce jet engine factory and a nuclear research centre.

They will be joined by McLaren Automotive in 2019.

The luxury British car maker announced plans to relocate its production of carbon fibre chassis from Austria to the UK site earlier this month.