Farewell to Brush

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A firm that manufactured bodywork for thousands of buses is set to close after more than 150 years. Brush Traction and its legendary Loughborough, Leicestershire factory is set to go by the end of the year, with the loss of 300 jobs.


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American owner Wabtec has made the decision because, it said, the site was no longer viable. Unite union Regional Officer Lakay Mahal called the decision to close the site ‘a crushing blow.’
More than 1,000 railway locomotives have been built by Brush, which has latterly been refurbishing rolling stock.

Bus bodywork was a significant part of the company’s business from before the First World War. Major customers included the Birmingham & Midland Omnibus Company, better known as Midland Red and the biggest operator outside London, Birmingham City Transport and Derby Corporation.
The coachworks side of the business passed to Willowbrook of Loughborough in 1952.