Page last updated at 18:50 GMT, Friday, 6 March 2009

Hoover confirms 337 jobs will go

Hoover factory at Merthyr Tydfil
The Hoover factory celebrated 60 years in Merthyr in 2008

Electrical goods manufacturer Hoover has confirmed it is to stop making washing machines at Merthyr Tydfil in south Wales with the loss of 337 jobs.

The company said a 90-day consultation period had now ended and it will cease production there on 14 March.

Hoover said it had concluded it could no longer produce competitively priced laundry products in Wales.

The firm hopes to keep its headquarters and warehousing facility at the site, with around 113 workers remaining.

Hoover, which began production in the town 60 years ago, announced its intentions last November.

The Italian-owned company said during the consultation, extensive discussions and detailed analysis, including business and financial presentations, took place with all the worker representatives.

We would like to thank all Merthyr manufacturing employees for their effort and commitment over so many years
David Lunt, Hoover

"Unfortunately there was no escaping the conclusion that our Merthyr Tydfil manufacturing facility could not produce competitively priced laundry products," the company added in its statement.

David Lunt, vice-president of human resources at Hoover, said: "We would like to thank all Merthyr manufacturing employees for their effort and commitment over so many years.

"We wish them luck and good health in retirement, or in seeking alternative employment.

Mr Lunt added: "Progress is being made in our discussions with both the Welsh Assembly Government and Merthyr Tydfil Council, regarding the continued presence of Hoover in Merthyr Tydfil.

Workers outside Hoover
Workers outside Hoover before a march to try to save the plant

He said the company is trying to keep its HQ functions, its finished goods warehousing and logistics operation along with an expanded after sales service operation in the current location at Merthyr.

He said Hoover had received very helpful guidance and advice from the assembly government and Merthyr Tydfil council in the matter.

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