Redruth factory to lose more than 100 jobs?
A Redruth factory is losing its major engineering sector to Eastern Europe with the loss of an estimated 175 jobs.
Pall UK has confirmed that its hydraulics manufacturing operation will shift to a new factory in Slovakia next year.
The firm has refused to say how many jobs are being lost from Redruth, but local sources say 175 quality engineering posts are to be made redundant.
Cornwall councillor Mark Kaczmarek, whose son and nephew are both set to lose their jobs, said it was kick in the teeth for the wider area.
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“We have to question the size of the factory and how long they will it going,” he said.
“They are very well paid engineering jobs.
“There aren’t may large employers left in Cornwall and it does concern me that people living in West Cornwall working at Palls will be devastated by this decision.”
He said the engineering section is due to close in 2015 and that staff were being asked to train the Slovakian work force who will take the new jobs created in the mean time.
“It is very difficult for my family as well as I have a son and nephew and sister in law who work at the factory,” he said.
“It is a huge knock.”
Redruth town mayor, Judy Davidson said the firm was a “very well respected employer” and the loss of the jobs would be felt in the community.
However, she said Redruth was rallying despite the economic downturn.
“You can’t stop this, it is very bad for the town and people but you have to try and see the glimmers of hope.
“Last year the number of people on the employment register in the town was 1500, now it is 1,000.
“The economy is buoyant, firms are recruiting, although people may need to retrain.”
However, Mrs Davidson said she didn’t think engineering, the industry the town was founded on, would return.
“I don’t think engineering will come back.
“We do have the multi-million old brewery site development that will bring new opportunities and will help counter this awful news.
“I hope Palls will keep a presence in the town. It may grow again, but this is very sad news for the staff."
Local MP George Eustice said the news was a disappointing blow, adding: "The only reassuring thing is that the changes are not expected immediately and there is likely to be a period of perhaps six months in which those affected will be able to see alternative work.
"I am hoping that many will be found jobs working on the aerospace division at Redruth or at the plant in Newquay. Finding alternative employment opportunities for the staff being made redundant should be the primary focus.”
A spokesman for Pall said the company planned to establish a new industrial manufacturing hub based in Slovakia which would open next year.
He said the new factory would have “minimal impact” in staffing levels at their manufacturing plants in Portsmouth, Ilfracombe, and Newquay.
“However, we will be transferring the majority of our Industrial manufacturing operations from our Redruth site to the new Slovakian location. Aerospace operations at the Redruth facility will remain.
“The move is part of our continued effort to ensure we are appropriately structured to deliver high-quality products and superior service to our customers worldwide.
“This includes developing dedicated centres that improve the effectiveness of our operations and make it easier for customers to do business with Pall.”
The spokesman added: “Staff for the Redruth Industrial business have been advised that their area will be impacted by the transfer.
“We are announcing this transfer of activity as early as possible to maximise our opportunity to find alternative roles for our valued employees.”