Babcock says it’s to close its Appledore shipyard

    200 jobs are at risk

    Babcock International (Babcock) has today announced it has taken the difficult decision to exit operations at its Appledore facility in Devon, ending its site lease in March 2019. 

    Babcock’s focus is now firmly on its workforce and its determination to protect their employment within the business. To that end, the company will offer relocation opportunities for all 199 Appledore employees at other Babcock facilities, 140 of whom are already on short-term redeployment to its Devonport operations. 

    Babcock very much regrets having to take this course of action and recognises the impact it will have on its dedicated and professional workforce. The company will now engage in a consultation period, working closely with its employees and their Trade Unions representatives during this difficult time. 

    In 2017/18 Appledore generated around £24 million of the Group’s total underlying revenue of £5.4 billion.

    The GMB has reacted with anger to the ‘devastating’ decision:

    The Union says a total of 200 people are set to lose their jobs when the yard closes in March 2019.

    Overnight the Government offered a £60 million deal to keep Appledore open. [1]

    But despite this, Babcock announced their decision to close the yard this morning.

    GMB and sister union Unite staged a mass rally to save the shipyard [2] and handed in a nearly 10,000 petition to the Ministry of Defence and Babcock just this week calling on them to save this shipyard which is vital to both the local community and U.K. shipbuilding. [3]

    Jake Mclean, GMB Rep at Appledore, said:

    “This news is a devastating blow to the workforce and the local community.

    “We want answers from the Government and Babcock about the package that was offered to save the yard.”

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