Ford’s new plant manager at Dagenham has returned to the site where his manufacturing career began. Dave Parker , 49, took over as Dagenham engine plant manager this month and looks forward to developing its role as Ford’s global centre for diesel engineering and manufacturing excellence.

Parker first moved to Dagenham 22 years ago as a shift superintendent, after four years as a buyer for Ford and a year studying for a master’s degree. Following other roles on the estate in truck fleet and utility and estates services, Liverpool-born Parker spent 10 years at Ford’s Halewood plant, where his father had worked.

Finishing his spell on Merseyside as transmission plant manufacturing manager, assignments as plant manager brought Parker to Leamington Foundry, Warwickshire, and to Cleveland Castings Plant, in Ohio, USA, before his return to Essex.

He takes over from Mike Harvey, who retires after 41 years with the company.

The Dagenham Estate has benefited from recent investment worth £325 million and currently produces five different diesel engines. Dagenham Engine Plant assembles 1.8, 2.0, 2.2 and 2.4-litre diesel engines and associated variants. The new Dagenham Diesel Centre alongside builds a 2.7-litre V6 unit.