Hundreds of workers have reportedly been made redundant at Britishvolt, a partly UK government assisted start-up that has run out of money. BritishVolt had ambitions to supply the UK the car industry with large numbers of batteries for future electric vehicles.

The company has been on the brink of going under for months after it failed to meet targets to secure critical UK government funding. The unlocking of private funding by investors was predicated on the UK government funding being approved.

Analysts note that the company had been set-up to build a battery factory before securing orders from electric vehicle manufacturing companies – a strategy criticised by some.

However, the Britishvolt manufacturing site in northeast England is seen as a valuable asset particularly well suited to battery manufacturing and international shipping.

The three-year-old Britishvolt project had been hailed by the UK government as an example of Britain being in the forefront of investment in emerging sustainable industries. However, after securing an initial tranche of investment from Glencore and others, it has struggled to find the necessary larger funding commitments for the next stage of its plans.