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Jobs at BAE Samlesbury secured by jet U-turn
JOBS at BAE’s Samlesbury plant have been secured after a government U-turn over development of the Harrier Jump Jet.
Following a Defence Review, the Government decided to cancel the development of the Jump Jet, which is worked on at BAE Systems at Samlesbury, and commit instead to the J-35C aircraft launched and captured through the ‘cat and traps’ catapult system.
But Defence Secretary Philip Hammond has now chosen to commit to the Jump Jet, which will be created by workers at the defence giant’s Ribble Valley plant.
Both aircraft are worked on at Samlesbury, and so even though the decision is not set to create any new positions, it is hoped the jobs will be safeguarded.
East Lancashire businessman and aerospace campaigner Dennis Mendoros said the U-turn would benefit the local area.
He said: “That kind of development coupled with the enterprise zone in Samlesbury is undoubtedly complimentary and will have a positive affect.
"It will also seal desperately needed jobs.”
The announcement is welcome good news for the company and the region, after it was reported in January that more than half of the 1,400 workers at its sites at Samlesbury and Warton were being redeployed or taking voluntary redundancy.
Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans said that the decision was excellent news for the area.
He said: “I wholeheartedly welcome this decision which produces value for money, recognising the manufacturing expertise in our area.”
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