100 jobs to go as Burnley factory closes

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SKILLED aerospace workers will lose their jobs after being told that their Burnley factory is closing.

Around 100 staff at Gardner Aerospace in Hargher Street, off Accrington Road, were told on Monday that the factory which manufactures aeroplane parts is closing in the next 12 to 18 months.

The news is yet another bitter blow to Burnley’s fragile economy, especially considering the redundancies are coming from the high skills sector, an area Burnley MP Gordon Birtwistle has been keen to champion.

One worker, who did not wish to be named, said: “Everyone has been given 90 days notice.

“Apparently the factory is moving to Derbyshire and Hull, while the Burnley site will be closed down. The workers feel sick.

“I have worked here 19 years and am retiring so it does not affect me but I feel sorry for the younger lads.”

Gardner Aerospace bought the Burnley site from Pendle Aeroform in 2002 and workers there manufacture parts for the Airbus A380 commercial airliner as well as parts for the Typhoon fighter jet, which is currently being deployed by the RAF in Libya.

The company’s business development director Mr Nick Guttridge said the global downturn and a restructuring of the company was behind the “difficult decision”.

He added: “We have been assessing the number of our factories, age and state of them. Market conditions have got tougher recently due to the global downturn and there is continuing market pressure.

“Machinery work currently being done in Burnley will move to a site in Hull while the fabrications and treatment work will move to Derby.

“We will be assisting our staff throughout this difficult period and will be encouraging them to apply for jobs at the new sites.”