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Last Updated: Friday, 1 June 2007, 12:37 GMT 13:37 UK
Pottery maker sheds 250 workers
Queen's birthday gift from the PM
The company also has sites in North America
About 250 pottery workers in Stoke-on-Trent are leaving their factory gates for the last time.

Royal Worcester and Spode announced in November that the jobs would be lost, and they began taking effect at the factory on Friday.

A spokesman for the union Unity said the company had blamed the increase on adverse trading conditions and the future of manufacturing in Stoke.

Up to 160 workers will remain at the factory.

The firm was chosen to provide the prime minister's present for the Queen's 80th birthday last summer.

Josiah Spode began manufacturing his wares in about 1770.

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