Page last updated at 18:16 GMT, Monday, 23 February 2009

Workers hear of woe 'on the telly'

Katie Fraser
BBC News

LDV vans
LDV's troubles were a surprise for many of its own workers

The government has told struggling van manufacturer LDV, which employs 900 people in Birmingham, it cannot expect a 30m bail-out to help cover its losses.

One worker at the plant in Birmingham, who did not want to be named, said it had come as an almost complete shock.

He said: "We knew that we were in trouble but I didn't realise how bad it was.

"I thought we could weather the storm and it would pick up again. Today it really hit me."

The worker, who has a wife and two teenage children only found out how bad it had got at his workplace when he turned on the breakfast news on Monday.

I've spoken to a few friends and everyone's feeling the same. We've been let down badly, particularly by the union
LDV employee

"It's really annoying when the first thing you hear about it is on the telly - you're getting it third-hand.

There's been no communication between management and any of the employees, as far as I know."

The man, who has worked at LDV for 15 years, said he is not the only one feeling worried.

"I've spoken to a few friends and everyone's feeling the same. We've been let down badly, particularly by the union."

Having been sent home in December when production was stopped, it has been difficult for employees to keep track of what is going on and whether they still have a job at all, according to this worker.

He told the BBC: "Unofficially I was told by a couple of blokes at work, who are in today, that if we don't get the money by this week, we'll be closed by Friday. But this is unofficial, it's not gospel.

"I am going to go in tomorrow and try to find out what's going on."

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