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Thursday, 26 September, 2002, 10:46 GMT 11:46 UK
Dyson plant shuts up shop
Malmesbury
Production is being transferred to Malaysia
The last shift worker at the Dyson factory in Malmesbury is to clock off on Friday morning.

The vacuum cleaner production factory in Wiltshire is to shut its manufacturing plant with the loss of 590 jobs.

The firm is moving upright vacuum cleaner manufacture to the Far East where labour costs are much cheaper.

The announcement about the move was made in February.


I hope people will see we have created wealth and have added a lot to the value of everybody's lives in the town

James Dyson

The company's founder, James Dyson, said he was sorry he had to make such a difficult business decision.

He pointed out there are still 1,150 people working at the factory - more than there were in 1998.

"I live here, this is my home and it is the home of everybody here at Dyson," he said.

"We love being here, we're a big employer and I hope a big contributor to the community.

"Even after this we will have more people than we did four years ago and six years ago there was nothing here.

"I hope people will see we have created wealth and have added a lot to the value of everybody's lives in the town."

Rob Lewis, one of the employees leaving on Friday, said the workers were finding it hard to cope.

Rob Lewis
Rob Lewis says the closure is extremely sad news

"I feel like I've been on death row for the last seven months," he said.

"Tonight, we're going in for the actual execution.

"Everybody's just sad, everybody's down."

The jobs remaining in Malmesbury are in research and development, described as the "heart and soul" of Dyson, and in the manufacture of the CR01 washing machine.

At the time of the announcement, trade unions said a decision to shift manufacturing away from the company's base in Malmesbury would hit the local economy hard.

John Monks, General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress, said: "Malmesbury is a small market town and Dyson is the only major manufacturer in the area.

"How is the local economy expected to soak up these redundancies?"


Click here to go to BBC Wiltshire
See also:

06 Feb 02 | England
05 Feb 02 | Business
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