TRAIN builder Hitachi has awarded a Tyneside IT firm a contract to provide information IT services and wireless internet connectivity.

Advantex Network Solutions Ltd, based in Gateshead, is supplying the infrastructure for Hitachi's £82m Newton Aycliffe factory.

A key feature will be the installation of wireless technology that will enable production staff and engineers to complete inspection and audits using portable hand held devices during the production of train cars.

Opened by Prime Minister David Cameron in September, the Aycliffe facility will employ 730 people working on the production of the new InterCity Express trains (IEP) for the East Coast main line and Great Western main line, as well as AT200 commuter trains for Scotland.

Currently employing 45 people, Advantex sales and marketing director Stephen O’Connell says investment in a skilled workforce to support customers is paying dividends and securing growth.

Advantex has already supplied IT to manufacturers including Nissan, Caterpillar and GE Oil and Gas.