Bus maker to cut 650 jobs as aviation sector calls for help
BUS manufacturer Alexander Dennis has launched a consultation on plans to cut 650 jobs, as baggage handling bosses warned of “significant redundancies” if the sector does not receive bespoke financial support from the Government.
Alexander Dennis said it plans to axe 200 jobs at its site in Guildford, Surrey, 160 in Falkirk, 90 in Scarborough and 200 in support functions across its bases.
Paul Davies, managing director, said: “We have no choice but to implement these tough decisions to protect the company’s future health.”
The warning came as bosses at four of the biggest ground handling companies servicing UK airports – Menzies, Swissport, Dnata and WFS – warned of further jobs pain if the sector did not receive government assistance.
The companies employ 30,000 people across UK airports to carry out services from baggage handling and check-in to catering and fuelling.
In a letter to Treasury ministers seen by The Daily Telegraph, the executives called on the Government to implement a tailored furlough scheme that would see handling companies guarantee a minimum number of hours per week per employee, with the shortfall being topped up. They added that the scheme would have an end date linked to the return of pre-crisis flight volumes at which point the obligation would switch back to the employer to pay 100pc of its staff costs.
They wrote: “The impact of Covid-19 has been devastating on the industry. Some parts of the industry have already had to make significant numbers of staff redundant due to the collapse in demand for aviation services.
“Our sector is no different and regrettably our businesses have had to enter into redundancy consultations with a large number of staff across a number of UK airports as the demand for our services from airlines has fallen by up to 90pc in some locations.”
On Tuesday, Stobart Group became the latest airport services provider to announce cuts after easyJet pulled out of Stansted and Southend airports.
Meanwhile, bus manufacturer ADL, said the job losses were in response to a significant fall in demand for new buses and coaches in the UK as a result of the pandemic.
It said it intends to transfer chassis production to its Falkirk factory, affecting 200 staff in manufacturing and operational support roles at Guildford.
Non-manufacturing functions, including engineering, test and development, will continue at Guildford.