A PRECISION engineer is creating new jobs and doubling capacity as part of a £1.5m expansion. 

Altec Engineering in Bowburn, County Durham, which makes a wide range of parts for industries including oil and gas, nuclear and aerospace, will start work this month on a 7,500sq ft extension to the company’s existing site. 

Due for completition in the autumn, the extension will allow Altec to double capacity and turnover whilst increasing profitability. 

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An additional 18 skilled engineering jobs will be created, five of which will be apprentices, taking the number of apprentices in training at Altec to 14, and bringing the overall number employed by the company to 80.

The extension includes an area dedicated to the build of special purpose machines, whilst the additional floor-space available for manufacturing will house a suite of new CNC machines to meet the increased demand for precision-machined components.

There will also be new production offices and a dedicated quality department to support the additional manufacturing capacity.

This latest investment in apprentice recruitment and training demonstrates Altec’s commitment to delivering the skills required for future growth in the Engineering Sector, whilst at the same time, safeguarding the skill base within the company, the firm said.

David Steel, managing director, said: “This is a key part of Altec’s strategy for the future and consolidates our plans for sustained growth over the next five years.

"The additional floor-space and capacity available will allow us to continue to meet the increase in demand for our services and systems which we are experiencing across all areas of the business”.

The announcement follows a recent £600,000 investment by the company in a range of new machine tools.

Altec was established in 1978 and operates in sectors including automotive, medical science and renewables.