Angry Workers Rally Outside Axed Plant near London

Published December 13th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Several hundred workers gathered outside their General Motors plant near London on Wednesday, expressing bitterness at the company's decision to close it. 

"We are angry, we feel betrayed," said Jimmy Hughes of the Transport and General Workers Union (TGWU) at the factory in Luton, 30 miles (50 kilometers) north of the capital. 

On Tuesday the giant US firm's British subsidiary Vauxhall said it would shut down the plant, one of its biggest in Britain, with the loss of 2,000 jobs. 

In a surprise announcement that angered unions and workers and astonished industry observers, Vauxhall said it needed to overhaul its British production schedules to deal with "rapidly changing European market conditions" and over-capacity in the industry. 

Between 200 and 300 workers outside the factory expressed their bitterness by chanting "Merry Christmas." 

They also asked to see the factory's managing director, Nick Reilly. 

Vauxhall said the closure would take place progressively over 15 months, and workers would be offered alternative employment -- LUTON (AFP)  




© 2000 Al Bawaba (

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