All 11 major suppliers to the Honda factory based in Swindon have been contacted by officers from the borough council, with the aim of finding them new customers.

Euclid Street’s leader of the business and economy team Julia Stuckey told members of the authority’s growing the economy overview and scrutiny committee that they were all looking for new customers, and were being helped in that by the council.

She said: “It’s important that the tier one suppliers in the borough want it known that while Honda might be leaving, they are not closing.

"They are very much still in business and will remain so, and are actively looking for new business.”

She said the announcement of the South Marston plant’s closure was unusual in that the car manufacturer was staying there for two years and that most of the staff would remain working there until the site was closed.

Coun Stuckley added: “It gives us time to plan rather than just pick up afterwards.”