Bakery closure will see hundreds lose their jobs

By Chris Willmott Thursday 22 November 2012 Updated: 29/11 10:23

Latest News

Delivery trucks are still rolling in and out of the site for the time being.

DEVASTATED workers at the Hovis plant in Garretts Green have spoken of their heartache at discovering their jobs are to be axed.

The owner of Hovis - Premier Foods - is to close two bakeries and cut 900 jobs as part of plans to overhaul the struggling bread business.

And the biggest impact will be felt in Garretts Green, where 511 jobs are to be lost with the closure of the factory and distribution operation.

Hovis operations at Greenford, west London, will also close, costing 196 jobs, while Premier Foods is also preparing to shut distribution sites at Plymouth and Mendlesham, Suffolk.

The closures are subject to consultation with employees but are scheduled to take place during the course of 2013.

One devastated employee told The Observer the news had left a black cloud over their family.

"Losing your job at any time is devastating, but there is something especially heartbreaking about it being at Christmas - the one time of the year where you try to forget all about your worries and just enjoy yourself," they said.

"That plan is out of the window now - I'm going to be spending most of it stressing and worrying about how I will pay the bills next year."

Another worker, who did not wish to be named, said staff had been expecting some sort of cuts after losing the supermarket deal, but not the closure of the entire factory.

"We can't believe it," he said.

"You go into work one day without a care and come home with a whole bag of them.

"I'm no spring chicken so getting another job at my age is going to be really difficult - I have no idea what I'm going to do to get by."

St Albans-based Premier, which also makes Mr Kipling cakes and Bisto gravy, has seen its Hovis division hit by intense competition in the bread market and a surge in wheat price inflation caused by poor weather.

It is set to lose a £75m-a-year contract with a major grocery chain from the middle of next year after failing to agree a new deal and is cutting 130 distribution routes and closing the supply centres to take into account the expected reduction in volumes.

Latest News

The area's links with the Hovis brand, which began in 1886, are set to be cut.

Popular »

1 Vehicle theft ring jailed

2 Green light for lottery community garden

3 Tributes paid to victim of Shirley car smash tragedy

4 Building work on A45 bridge in the pipeline

5 Chief Contable award for brave duo

More news »

Comet store to close

THE under-threat Comet store will close its doors

Beautiful orchids brighten up the winter

THE HALLS of Arden School were filled with

Protesters vent train fares anger

DISGRUNTLED rail passengers gathered outside Solihull Station to

Garden is a dream come true

WATCHING their children play safely in the garden

Regional news »


Coventry Observer
Sketch released following Tile Hill assault

DETECTIVES investigating an assault in Tile Hill Woods have released ...

Redditch Standard
Redditch vets donate to Manchester Dogs' Home

THE POOR pooches caught up in an arson attack which ...

Leamington Observer
Serious injuries following crashes

A DRIVER was freed from this car after it was ...

Stratford Observer
Shipston man escapes jail after unprovoked attack

A SHIPSTON man forced his way into a flat before ...