We’ve had a couple of fact finding tours around the mind blowingly huge Sunderland car plant in which we took over 3 hours to walk 3 miles and even then we didn’t see everything! Accompanied by a guide, who was a retired employee, I looked for things to explore through writing.
With all the activity and bustle and the sheer scale of the place, it wasn’t hard to find plenty of inspiration, in fact I was in danger of sensory overload!
There are 5 areas in the building of a car: Press, Body, Paint, Trim and Chassis. To enter them is like stepping into another world: dancing robots, miles of cables, gigantic machines with foundations as deep as a 3 storey building, a constant stream of part built cars floating above your head. With all systems planned to the last microsecond for absolute efficiency, it would be easy to see the workers almost as robots. And this is where our project comes in – to look at the humans and the humanity behind the machines. In the coming months, I’m looking forward to what unfolds.