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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 December 2006, 17:29 GMT
Burberry campaign goes to Commons
Leighton Andrews AM and Chris Bryant MP among the protesters
A number of Welsh politicians staged a protest over Burberry's plans
Workers fighting to keep Burberry's south Wales factory open have taken their campaign to the House of Commons.

Before meeting MPs, the workers ceremonially cut a Burberry tie with a pair of scissors to claim how the brand is "cutting ties" with its UK roots.

The clothing firm is proposing to shut its Rhondda site in March, with 300 job losses, and take production abroad.

Burberry has said it does not intend to abandon the UK, and has offered staff work at its site in Yorkshire.

The firm, which is marking its 150th anniversary this year, has reported an 11% rise in half-year sales with pre-tax profits of more than 70m.

The workers' tie-cutting protest outside the House of Commons was followed by a meeting with MPs.

GMB union organiser Mervyn Burnett said the tie-cutting illustrated "Burberry's plans to cut its ties with Britain".

Celebrities

He said: "Burberry is as British as the changing of the guard. It was founded in 1856 and its merchandise has been manufactured in the UK since then.

Bryn Terfel and Jill Evans MEP
Opera star Terfel has called for Burberry to 'see sense'

"People buying the high quality goods produced in Treorchy expect that they will continue to be made by skilled workers in the UK."

Welsh Secretary Peter Hain has told Burberry's senior management that many workers would not accept an offer of alternative work in Yorkshire.

Opera star Bryn Terfel is the latest celebrity to add his voice to calls for Burberry to keep its Rhondda factory open.

Hollywood actors Ioan Gruffudd, one of the faces of Burberry, and Rhys Ifans are also supporting the campaign to stop the factory from being closed.

Burberry has said the factory is not "commercially viable".




SEE ALSO
Terfel supports Burberry campaign
17 Dec 06 |  South East Wales
Gruffudd supports Burberry fight
27 Nov 06 |  South East Wales

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