Jobs to go at P&O

SHOCK redundancies have today left workers at an Ipswich-based company devastated.Workers at P&O Ferrymasters, in Goddard Road, the HQ of the haulage arm of the shipping giant, heard yesterday lunchtime they were to lose their jobs.

SHOCK redundancies have today left workers at an Ipswich-based company devastated.

Workers at P&O Ferrymasters, in Goddard Road, the HQ of the haulage arm of the shipping giant, heard yesterday lunchtime they were to lose their jobs.

One worker, who did not wish to be named told The Evening Star that rumours of redundancies had come true leaving him and colleagues stunned.

He said: "There had been rumours going round. We were told at dinnertime. All of a sudden supervisors, workers, it seems we are all going.


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"There are about 11 or 12 redundancies. I am devastated. I will just have to get another job I suppose."

Today a spokesman for P&O Ferrymasters confirmed the Ipswich operation would be affected by reductions in employee numbers.

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But he could not confirm how many people in Ipswich had lost their jobs.

He said: "P&O Ferrymasters has been conducting a review of its European businesses. The objective of the review was to assess the company's competitiveness in light of difficult trading conditions faced by the European freight and logistics sector.

The spokesman said: "This review has indicated that to further improve efficiencies throughout Europe it will necessitate a reduction in overheads and fixed costs across many parts of the business.

"Over the coming weeks P&O Ferrymasters will be consulting with its employees and their representatives to discuss a wide range of options.

"These include a proposed reduction in the employee base.

"Exact figures have yet to be worked out as part of the negotiations with staff, but it is estimated that, regrettably, in the region of 130 jobs will be affected."

The job losses come less than six weeks after the company announced it was reducing its cross channel services in a bid to make savings in the P&O Ferries arm of the business.

The redundancies, which have been bitterly opposed by the shipping union RMT, are expected to save £55 million a year.

P& O said its tourist traffic had been adversely affected by fewer day trips and the expansion of the low cost airlines.

What do you think? Are you affected by these job cuts? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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