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BBC Wales's Geraint Vincent
"The march through Gorseinon's town centre was full of poignancy and pride"
 real 56k

Friday, 15 June, 2001, 19:49 GMT 20:49 UK
Era ends with Corus workers' march
Corus workers' final march
Staff marched away under their union banner
Steelworkers in south Wales marked their final shift with a mass march from the company gates.

Corus staff from the Bryngwyn plant in Gorseinon attracted a large crowd of relatives, friends, and other locals, all offering a final show of solidarity on their last day at work on Friday afternoon.

Sir Brian Moffat: Corus chief executive was criticised for job cuts
Sir Brian Moffat: Corus chief executive was criticised for job cuts
The 90 staff have lost their jobs following the company's announcement of drastic restructuring of its operations across the UK - including shutting Bryngwyn altogether.

The staff marched away from the plant under the banner of the Transport and General Workers Union in a final act of defiance.

T&G regional officer Andy Richards said: "We have always maintained that Corus are guilty of a gross act of mindless industrial vandalism in closing a profitable efficient plant such as Bryngwyn.

We will not slink into industrial oblivion with our heads down

Union boss Keith Yates
"In the end, the company ignored our arguments and took the plant from us, but they will never take the dignity and principles away from our members.

"This protest, we hope, will galvanise the community into ensuring that Corus do not leave a highly polluted site, but fulfils its obligation to the community to clean it up, no matter the costs."

Massive cuts

Despite impassioned pleas from politicians and steelworkers, Corus announced it February it would axe 6,050 jobs.

Wales is bearing the brunt of the restructuring with over 3,000 losses.

The decision attracted outrage and the steel giant was accused of destroying Welsh communities.

Leaflets announcing the march had been distributed throughout the village of Gorseinon, near Swansea.

T&G branch chairman Keith Yates said: "We all decided at our last branch meeting that we will not slink into industrial oblivion with our heads down.

"We decided to march out under our union banner with our heads held high."

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02 May 01 | Wales
Talks fail to save steel jobs
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