Windscreen firm places jobs at risk

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COUNCIL chiefs have pledged to help if staff at Auto Windscreens in Chesterfield lose their jobs.

They made the promise after it was revealed almost 400 jobs are at risk in the town after the UK’s second largest windscreen repair and replacement firm went into administration.

The company employs 338 people at its head office in Britannia House, on Storforth Lane, and a further 48 at a factory at Stand Park, Whittington Moor.

Nationwide, 1,100 jobs are at risk after the collapse, which followed “trading and cash-flow problems”.

Most staff have been sent home while administrators Deloitte hold “urgent” discussions to try to secure the future of the firm.

Deloitte said no redundancies had been made, but said it had asked employees to stop working as it was unable to continue trading until financing is in place. The administrators seeking funding from major customers to restart the business in the short term.

Chesterfield Council leader Coun Ray Russell said: “Our thoughts are with the workers and their families. Auto Windscreens has a longstanding relationship with Chesterfield, and the news is obviously of deep concern. We are in contact with the company and the administrators to see how we can help should the situation result in job losses, and we have already made plans to work with Jobcentre Plus to provide support if this becomes necessary.”

Auto Windscreens operates 68 fitting centres, 550 mobile units, a distribution centre in Birmingham and a call centre. The company has an annual turnover of £63 million.

Matt Cowlishaw, of Deloitte’s reorganisation services team, said: “We are now in urgent discussions in an attempt to save the business.”

Deloitte has set up a hotline for customers on 01246 223000.