Honda’s 370 acre site in Swindon has been sold to the Panattoni Group, which is Europe’s largest developer of new build industrial and logistics facilities.

The Group, which is also building a warehouse for Amazon at Swindon’s Symmetry Park, has pledged £700 million of future investment and says it hopes to attract new employers and provide for existing businesses looking to expand in Swindon.

The site becomes operational next year and Honda closes down its factory in July.

Phil Smith, MD of Business West, said: “This opens a new chapter for Swindon. The past two years have been a period of uncertainty for both workers and Swindon. This is good news and puts an end to much speculation and concern. 

“We are pleased the site will be retained for employment use and it appears that the number of jobs created will be equal or greater than currently employed by Honda. It will be a boost for economic recovery in the region over the next two years.”

Susie Kemp, chief executive of Swindon Borough Council said: “This investment offers a significant boost to the local economy creating thousands of jobs for Swindon and the surrounding area.

“We already have a strong working relationship with Panattoni following their development of the adjacent site, Symmetry Park, and look forward to working with them over the next year.”

The site will be decommissioned in July after the shut down.

Jason Smith, director at Honda of the UK Manufacturing, said: “From our engagement with Panattoni we are confident that they can bring the development forward in a commercially timely fashion and generate exciting prospects for Swindon and the wider community.”

James Watson, development director for Panattoni, said: “We are committed to invest over £700 million into the site to attract new employers and provide for existing businesses looking to expand in Swindon.”

Paddy Bradley, CEO of Swindon and Wiltshire Local Enterprise Partnership, said: “The sale of the site is an exciting step forward for securing economic opportunities for the local economy.

“Confirmation of the future of the site provides a major boost to the local economy and will provide certainty, especially in the current uncertain times the whole country faces.

Completion on the exchange is expected next spring . The new owners will start to regenerate and redevelop the site later that year subject to planning consent.