Mayor of Royston Cllr Mary Antony made her first official visit to Johnson Matthey's headquarters to learn more about the company's 65-year history in the town.

Johnson Matthey opened in the 1950s, and now has just over 1,800 people working at the site.

The mayor was accompanied by Royston Town Council member Rob Inwood, and during their visit they toured the site's Clean Air facility, which produces catalysts to enable cleaner air. Part of the site includes a vehicle testing laboratory to help the catalysts meet emissions control regulation.

Royston Crow: Royston Mayor Cllr Mary Antony and Cllr Rob Inwood toured Johnson Matthey's headquartersRoyston Mayor Cllr Mary Antony and Cllr Rob Inwood toured Johnson Matthey's headquarters (Image: Johnson Matthey)

They also visited the hydrogen operations. In July, Johnson Matthey announced that Royston would be the location for its new £80 million gigafactory to increase the manufacture of hydrogen fuel cell components.

The new factory is expected to be in operation by 2024, and the company says it will aim to safeguard highly skilled manufacturing jobs in the area.

Cllr Antony said: "As one of the largest employment providers in Royston and the adjacent community, Johnson Matthey plays a significant role in our community.

"We are grateful for the many sponsorships the company provides to different activities in our community."

The mayor and councillor also heard about the company's work in the community, supporting charities including Home-Start, Make Lunch and Garden House Hospice Care.

Johnson Matthey also supports programmes within King James Academy, is a sponsor of Royston Arts and Kite Festivals, and more recently of Sustain-Ability - with plans to expand its environmental outreach programme.

Cllr Inwood said: "It was a fantastic experience to be invited to Johnson Matthey and just see the exciting plans they have got, especially here in Royston, and to see just how important green issues are to the company.

"What was also pleasing is that they agree to build a much closer bond between the town council and community, one that I look forward to being part of."

Paul Machin, Johnson Matthey's operation director at the Royston site, said: "We have a proud heritage in Royston and it’s an honour to welcome the town mayor and Cllr Inwood to show them what we are doing for the local community and beyond."