Page last updated at 14:25 GMT, Wednesday, 1 April 2009 15:25 UK

Door factory firm to cut 160 jobs

Leaderflush Shapland factory
The factory has been operating in Barnstaple since the 1850s

About 160 workers at a door manufacturing factory in north Devon are facing redundancy.

Leaderflush Shapland told workers at its factory in Barnstaple on Tuesday that it planned to cut 185 posts from its workforce of 293.

Union officials said they were negotiating with the firm to cut the number of planned redundancies by 25.

Managing director Todd Altman said the factory would stay open and at least 133 staff would keep their jobs.

Business concentration

In January, the firm cut factory working hours from 38 to 30 a week hoping that business would pick up.

The GMB union said staff were in "complete shock".

GMB official Kevin Norman said: "Things were looking rosy six months ago but the company has been hit hard by the recession and orders have just not been forthcoming."

The company told staff it was concentrating business at other sites.

Mr Altman said that a 90-day consultation had begun and the firm was working with unions on the proposal to cut the number of redundancies by 25.

In a statement the company said: "We entered a 90-day consultation period on 31 March.

"The current updated proposals would leave 133 positions working on the Barnstaple site. The consultation process will continue with a meeting planned next week."

The factory, which was previously known as Shapland & Petter, has been operating in Barnstaple since the 1850s.


Talks under way to save jobs

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