South Yorkshire has suffered another jobs blow after Bridon announced plans to close a wire rope manufacturing site.
The move would mean 60 workers at the ropery at Carr Hill, Balby, will lose their jobs as production is shifted to Newcastle.
The company has informed 83 staff who could be affected by the move of the proposals, which have gone out to consultation.
Staff were notified yesterday by regional operations director, Paul Bissett. He said the jobs would be lost between next March and June 2013, and talks were starting with unions.
A spokesman for the company said: “Having recently invested £30 million in a state-of-the-art new ropery on Newcastle’s Tyneside, which will produce the largest and most complex ropes in the world, we are proposing to close Doncaster’s south ropery by the time our Newcastle site becomes operational in December 2012.
“This transfer of operations would improve the business’s competitiveness by significantly cutting manufacturing lead times and allowing us to deliver rope to customers much more swiftly.
“Bridon is committed to maintaining and developing its Doncaster operation in the coming years. This commitment is evidenced by the £5 million we have invested in the last six months in upgrading our machinery and manufacturing facilities in Doncaster, and the £4.6 million we are investing in developing and building a new technical centre in 2012.”
The news of the job losses comes only a few weeks after Prince Andrew visited and praised the firm.
Bridon currently employs over 450 people in Doncaster, in its wire mill, ropery, technical centre and head office.
The ropery which is earmarked for closure dates back to 1938. Bridon was originally formed in 1924 from an amalgamation of a number of wire rope manufacturers, the earliest of which date back to the late 18th century.
One employee, who asked not to be named, said: “Everyone is really gutted. Most people there have been working there since they left school, and some have been there 30 years.”
Doncaster Central MP Rosie Winterton described the jobs blow as ‘devastating’.
She said: “The loss of 60 jobs is bad news for our community and devastating for those directly affected by this announcement. It is particularly hard for families at this time of year.
“It’s never been more important to make sure Doncaster remains a good place to do business. Every job is important and it’s sad that Bridon International has made this decision.”
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