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Last Updated: Friday, 22 July, 2005, 14:10 GMT 15:10 UK
Union votes on Rolls-Royce strike
Jerry Hicks
Jerry Hicks was dismissed from his job by managers on Wednesday
A union is preparing to ballot staff at Rolls-Royce over strike action after an unofficial walkout in Bristol.

Some 400 workers at the plant which makes military jet engines took action after Amicus official Jerry Hicks was sacked over allegations of misconduct.

Amicus said ballots would be sent out on Monday and warned industrial action could spread to Rolls-Royce's five other sites across the UK.

A company spokesman said Rolls-Royce had not been informed of any ballot.

He added "virtually everyone" was working normally at the plant on Friday, and that there had been no talks between the union and management.

Earlier, the trade union said any action - if approved - was likely to take place in four weeks' time.

'All pledged support'

Mr Hicks, who was a convener at the Bristol plant that makes engines for military jets, was dismissed on Wednesday after a disciplinary panel hearing.

The panel heard he had been accused of gross misconduct after organising an unofficial strike in support of two members of staff who faced the sack.

Amicus said in a statement that there was "a meeting of union convenors from all the UK Rolls-Royce sites...at which they all pledged their support" for Mr Hicks.

Rolls-Royce said it had been "regrettable" that staff had decided to down tools on Thursday.

"This is not about the trade unions, this is about the gross misconduct of one of our employees that undermined the lawful and legitimate legal process for the handling of issues involving other employees," Tony Wood, managing director of Rolls-Royce's Defence Aerospace division said.

Staff walk out as official sacked
21 Jul 05 |  Bristol/Somerset
Ballot threatened over RR sacking
20 Jul 05 |  Bristol/Somerset
Staff stage Rolls-Royce walk-out
19 Jul 05 |  Bristol/Somerset

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