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Redundancies avoided at Lancashire's BAE factories
4:00pm Friday 8th June 2012 in Business
COMPULSORY redundancies have been avoided at Lancashire’s BAE factories.
The news has been wel-comed by workers’ unions, who have been liaising with bosses at the defence giant to mitigate forced losses.
BAE Systems had ann-ounced last September that 1,400 workers at Samlesbury and Warton were at risk.
In a bid to avoid the compulsory job losses, manual workers voted in March to take one day’s unpaid leave each month. The company has also secured a number of con-tracts including for hawk jets in Saudi Arabia.
Around 200 staff have already taken voluntary redundancy, while other jobs have been saved through redeployment within the company.
Phil Entwistle, shop floor convenor for the BAE union, said: “It is obviously good news.
“The employees are over the moon and it feels like there is a big weight lifted off them knowing there will not be any compulsory redundancies.”
Martin Wright, chief executive for the North West Aerospace Alliance, which is based in Nelson, also welcomed the news.
He said: “It is good that they are keeping the expertise together and we need to focus on the measures that BAE and the workers have taken collectively to minimise redundancies.”
He also said that there may be potential for the company to benefit its supply chain and move into the civil aerospace market, which, unlike the defence market, was seeing considerable growth.
A spokesman for BAE Systems said: “Since announcing potential job losses last September, the company, our employees and their representatives have been focused on pursuing all opportunities to avoid and mitigate those potential job losses.
“We are pleased to confirm that, through employees leaving on voluntary redundancy or to other parts of BAE Systems, additional work coming in and other inn-ovative mitigations, we have been successful in avoiding the need for compulsory redundancies at our Samlesbury and Warton sites.”