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Stour Vale Works, Kidderminster (Closure)

Volume 654: debated on Wednesday 28 February 1962

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15.

asked the Minister of Labour what information he has concerning the proposed closure on 30th April, 1962, of the nationalised Stour Vale works at Kidderminster of Richard Thomas Baldwins, Limited; what redundancy is to occur; and what steps he is taking to obtain alternative employment for persons displaced by the works closure.

The firm has decided to close these works, which have been running at a loss for some time because there have been insufficient orders to keep the mills economically loaded. One-hundred-and-ninety-four persons will be affected, of whom eighty-five have been offered jobs at the company's King Swinford works near Stourbridge. My local officers have arranged to register in advance of their discharge men seeking alternative work. There should be no great difficulty in finding employment as I am glad to say that unemployment in Kidderminster is well below the regional and national average.

16.

asked the Minister of Labour what steps he is taking to initiate conversations with the management of Richard Thomas Baldwins, Limited, to obtain adequate compensatory payments and/or honoraria, on severance of employment of long-service steel works employees, due to the proposed closure on 30th April, 1962, of the nationalised Stour Vale works, Kidderminster.

I understand that payments are to be made to the workers who have a minimum of five years' service with the company, and do not continue in the company's employment at another establishment.

On this point of honoraria, can my right hon. Friend assure the House that the standards of compensation and/or honoraria paid to redundant employees by this nationalised undertaking will be not less favourable than those customarily observed by the best private enterprise standards?

I can tell my hon. Friend that I am informed that the scheme of this firm is on comparable lines to those of other firms in industry which have redundancy schemes.