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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 January 2008, 15:19 GMT
Quarry future 'very optimistic'
Penrhyn quarry
The new owners are optimistic about the future
The new owners of four fraud-hit slate quarries in Gwynedd say they are "very confident and very optimistic" about the future of the business.

Rigcycle bought the former Alfred McAlpine Welsh Slate businesses for 31m on 24 December last year.

The 220 workers at Bethesda, Blaenau Ffestiniog and the Nantlle Valley have been told their jobs are safe.

McAlpine had uncovered what it described as "clear and systematic fraud" in the business in 2007.

Managing director of the Gwynedd quarries, Alan Smith, said the company was temporarily trading as Rigcycle, but the name would soon be changed to Welsh Slate.

'Good news'

"I'm very optimistic for the future and delighted with how the workforce has knuckled down and worked over the past months.

"Fundamentally this is a good business and I expect that there will be a profit in 2008," he added.

Paddy McNaught, the Transport and General workers union official in Gwynedd welcomed the news that everybody currently employed was being kept on under the same terms and conditions by the new company.

"It is good news as it secures the business for the area," he said.

Slate quarries are sold for 31m
24 Dec 07 |  North West Wales
Firm positive on slate sell-off
22 Oct 07 |  North West Wales
Slate quarry job losses 'reduced'
02 Apr 07 |  North West Wales

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