DYSON celebrates its 21st birthday this week with a detailed plan for a £250 million expansion of its Malmesbury headquarters.
As the Standard reported earlier this year, the firm has a master plan for the future. But it hopes a new research and development facility will be up and running in 2016 and is already looking for 400 new engineers.
A bid for outline planning permission has already been lodged and last week Malmesbury Town Council’s planning committee lent its support, although it has expressed concern about parking problems and rush hour congestion.
This week the firm submitted more detailed plans to Wiltshire Council for the first phase to include, new labs, a multi-use sports facility, car parking for 600 vehicles and a new cafe.
When the firm first revealed its expansion proposals, officials said conditions at the Tetbury Hill HQ were so cramped engineers were having to work in corridors.
It is hoped the new labs and research space will allow the engineers to expand motor electronic research, increase experimentation with noise cancelling acoustic technology, work on robotics and develop Dyson vision projects.
Prototyping and test labs will be used to create new products beyond vacuum cleaners, hand driers and fans as part of what the firm calls a pipeline of new technology. It expects to spend more than £4 million a year on new patents.
Founder Sir James Dyson, who created his first vacuum cleaner in a coach house in Bath, said: “We are ambitious – and it’s through research and development that developments in technology come about.
"We’ll be looking for 3,000 engineers to deliver Dyson’s pipeline of technology, but we need 400 of Britain’s brightest right away – our ideas simply can’t wait”
As part of its 25-year masterplan, the company wants to hire 1,000 extra engineers and support roles over the next three years.
Security at the new research facility designed by Wilkinson Eyre – the same firm that created the existing wavy-roofed building - will be so tight staff will have to go through biometric scanning to go in.
Cycle sheds and shower facilities for cyclists are planned and a Dyson spokesman workers living locally would be expected to use them rather than their cars.
In response to congestion concerns, a shuttle bus is also being tried between Tetbury Hill and Chippenham.
Two new roundabouts, one at the top of Tetbury Hill and the other on the junction with the A429, have also been proposed.
The applications will be decided by Wiltshire Council.