Page last updated at 11:49 GMT, Tuesday, 20 April 2010 12:49 UK

Union fears 1,200 job losses at Sellafield in Cumbria

Sellafield
The Sellafield site is being decommissioned over several years

More than 1,000 jobs are at risk at the Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant in Cumbria, union leaders claim.

The GMB union said it would resist any compulsory redundancies at the complex, which employs about 10,000 people.

Operator Sellafield Ltd has begun a review of decommissioning work at the site, but has pledged to consult with trade unions.

A GMB spokesman said the union was "very concerned" that up to 1,200 could be shed if some work was scaled back.

Tom Brennan of the GMB said: "Redundancies would completely cut across the need to build a new fleet of nuclear power stations to maintain electricity supplies in the UK.

"Redundancies on this scale would dilute the skills base of the UK's nuclear industry and will be resisted by the GMB."

The company said it was facing a bill of £100m to clean up high-hazard areas and had been forced to review what lower priority work could be undertaken.

A company spokesman said: "Sellafield Ltd recently received confirmation from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority that our allocated annual site funding limit for 2010/11 is £1.5bn.

"However, due to over £100m extra being spent in high-hazard areas, we have to prioritise the work we undertake this year.

"Once we have completed our assessments and understand the position better, we will speak directly to our unions, if necessary through a formal process, to our workforce and to other stakeholders."



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