Vauxhall is to deploy 22 workers from its Luton factory, which is where it builds the Vivaro van, to the nearby Smiths Medical facility to make ventilators for the NHS.

Vauxhall said the staff, 20 assemblers, plus a team leader and supervisor – were hand-picked from Vauxhall’s Kimpton Road Vivaro plant. They were chosen for their specialist skills and ability to carry out intricate production work to a very high standard, according to the manufacturer.

Working on a static production line, the team will conduct in-line quality testing as the ventilators are produced, with a stringent pass/fail safeguard in place to ensure the units meet the highest standards.

Matching the three-shift framework adopted by Vauxhall’s Luton Plant, each team member will work a 40-hour a week plus overtime as required during the secondment, which lasts until 31 July.

All employees will be respecting Vauxhall and Smiths Group’s strict COVID-19 protocols to keep them safe while they work together on the project.

Stephen Norman, managing director, Vauxhall Motors, said: “Our plant employees are used to working on lines where repeatable high quality is essential, and I’m confident that their skills will transfer exceptionally well to the production of much-needed ventilators for the NHS. Vauxhall will continue to work with the British government to support other similar initiatives.”