Labour demands action over 'devastating' cuts to Barnoldswick Rolls-Royce plant

The Labour group on Lancashire County Council is demanding swift action is taken to protect future jobs at Barnoldswick's under-threat Rolls-Royce plant.

Tuesday, 8th December 2020, 10:12 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th December 2020, 10:16 am
Rolls-Royce, Barnoldswick

The engineering giant, which just last week announced it was cutting more than 100 jobs from its Barnoldswick site, on top of many more made last year, is offshoring British jobs to Singapore and Spain.

Leader of the Labour group Coun. Azhar Ali said they would be tabling a motion at the next full council meeting instructing the chief executive to write to the Prime Minister for the government to immediately intervene.

Coun. Ali said: "The Prime Minister said he wanted to level up the north but instead he sits by as Rolls-Royce, which has received millions of pounds to support British jobs, cuts them at its flagship site in Barnoldswick and exports skilled jobs to Singapore and Spain.

Sign up to our daily Burnley Express Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

"It's time Boris Johnson and local Conservative MPs supported world class British engineers rather than sit back and watch the devastation that these cuts will have on the local economy in Barnoldswick and Lancashire.

"We need the Government to get Rolls-Royce around the table to save our skills and the jobs of thousands of people in the supply chain who will be affected. We need action now, not afterwards."

The motion reads:

Lancashire County Council notes that Rolls-Royce sites at Barnoldswick contribute £1 billion to the region's GDP and that the company has received hundreds of millions of pounds from the government to support research and development in order to support British jobs.

Lancashire County Council notes with great concern that the company has announced it is offshoring British jobs to Singapore with the loss of wide-chord fan blade production and has now announced the loss of jobs from Barnoldswick to Spain.

If Rolls-Royce implement these decisions in full, little more than 100 people will be left at the birthplace of the jet engine at the Barnoldswick site, down from over 1,000 just a few years ago. This will have an immediate and devastating impact on the supply chain and wider economy of the county and, in the longer term, lead to the loss of advanced manufacturing capabilities and skilled job opportunities.

This council expresses solidarity with the generations of skilled workers at the Barnoldswick sites since the jet engine was developed there, the current workforce, their families and the wider community suffering so badly as a result of the company’s actions and Government’s inaction and instructs the chief executive as a matter of urgency:

to write to the Prime Minister asking for the government to immediately intervene in this misguided decision by Rolls Royce to shut down large parts of its operation on its Barnoldswick site in Pendle which affects the strategic capabilities of the country as a whole;

ask the Prime Minister for a meeting with group leaders, Unite the Union, Chair of the Lancashire LEP and the Chief Executive of Rolls Royce;

to write to Ben Walllace as Secretary of State for Defence to request consideration of ways in which defence contracts could be transferred to Barnoldswick to utilise the world class skills of the engineers at the site and a meeting with group leaders, Unite the Union;

to ask all Lancashire MPs to actively support the Battle for Barnoldswick campaign.