More than 100 Railcare redundancies announced in ‘brutal fashion’

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More than 100 skilled jobs will go at historic train repair depot Railcare in Wolverton after the company went into administration this week.

Administrators BDO have confirmed 118 redundancies in Wolverton and 33 at the company’s other site in Glasgow.

It is claimed that employees have already been informed of their fate after names were read out from a list.

The news has been met with anger by RMT Union general secretary Bob Crow. He said in a statement: “This is appalling news and RMT is demanding to know just what Vince Cable and his department have been up to following their pledges to support the workforce at Railcare in getting through this short term cash flow crisis.

“Yesterday we were told that BIS had intervened to stop the redundancy process and yet today nearly 150 skilled and loyal workers have been told personally that they are finished despite the fact that Railcare has a full order book from the end of the summer. The names of those on the redundancy list were read out in mass meetings in the most brutal and despicable fashion.

“This scandal makes a mockery of the governments paper pledges to support British engineering jobs. RMT had sought assurances that we would get a meeting with Vince Cable to examine option for rescuing Railcare before any major changes, like redundancies, were made.

“We are now told that the earliest we can get a meeting with Dr Cable’s officials is Monday despite the fact that this crisis has been running all week.

“RMT will continue to work with our sister unions and politicians and communities to stop the senseless destruction of Springburn and Wolverton and we will use every weapon available to us, including direct action, to stop this wanton industrial vandalism at two major rail engineering plants.

“We are also continuing to demand urgent face to face talks with Vince Cable himself. He cannot be allowed to hide behind faceless announcements from the administrators.”

The company called in administrators on Wednesday, citing difficult trading conditions and reduced demand.

The RMT claimed the problems were caused by a cash flow crisis, adding that Railcare had a full order book of work from October but had been hit by delays to fleet refurbishment programmes resulting from the Government’s rail franchising timetable being aborted after the West Coast “fiasco”.

The 118 job losses in Wolverton accounts for around 40 per cent of the workforce there, and the future of the remaining employees remains uncertain.