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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 March 2007, 12:04 GMT
Job threat after factory closure
Welders
Hundreds could be out of work as a result of the closure
Hundreds of jobs are under threat after a heating company confirmed it is to close two sites in Lancashire.

Baxi Heating UK has announced that the Alfer Cast Iron Foundry in Bamber Bridge and a production plant in Padiham will be shut down.

The firm, which produces central heating and hot water systems, says it is aiming to centralise its operation at its Preston factory.

The unions say workers feel "devastated" by the announcement.

More than 500 people are currently employed at the plant in Padiham but the company says it hopes to offer a significant number of employees the option of relocating to the Club Street site in Preston.

Union 'unconvinced'

Baxi also says it hopes to offer all 84 workers at the iron foundry at Bamber Bridge, which is to close after 30 years in operation, jobs elsewhere on the site.

The exact number of redundancies will not be known until the end of the 90-day consultation period.

Terry Burns, regional officer for the union Amicus, remains unconvinced.

He said: "Even if they are able to offer 250 people jobs in Preston, that's still hundreds of people out of work.

"This area can ill-afford to lose jobs and there's only a few companies round here that still do this sort of work, so many have closed down recently. It feels like it's all going to stop."

Mr Burns said the workers felt very let down by the decision and that the closure would have a devastating effect on local economy.




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