Job losses threatened at major printing firm in city
Workers at a Peterborough printing firm face an uncertain start to the year after being told their jobs could be under threat. The staff at the Wyndeham printing plant in Storeys Bar Road, Peterborough, were told a consultation over redundancies and downsizing their operations was beginning last month.
It is thought that a third of the180workerscouldlosetheir jobs as a result of the action.
The firm, which produces publications including The Economist, FT Magazine and Marketing Week, said the decision to downsize wasasaresult of a decline in the market.
The consultation also affects the Heron plant in Essex, which could see 34 of the 240 staff lose their jobs.
In a report in Print Week, Wyndeham chief executive Paul Utting said: “The market for web offset printing is continuing to decline, and further consolidation and restructuring of this type is inevitable as companies respond to the reduction in demand.”
He said the rate of decline equated to between15percent20 per cent over a two- year period.
“That’s about £ 50m of volume disappearing, which is the equivalent of a couple of factories.
“We are determined that all our businesses remain able to compete in this ever- changing market.”
Peterborough MP Stewart Jackson said he hoped staff would be able to keep their jobs whentheconsultationfinished.
He said: “Any large scale change like this is going to be worrying for people.
“Wewanttostarttheyearby recruiting new highly skilled jobs for the city.
“I hope this is only a consultation, and they don’t make anyone redundant. This is obviously very sad and devestating for the people involved, especially at the beginning of the new year.”
Iain Crighton, chairman of the Peterborough Chamber of Commerce, said it was disappointing to hear the news.
He said: “It is very sad when businesses have to cut back on staff numbers, particularly after Peterborough had a year of good news in terms of employment opportunities.
“I think this shows that although there is a level of optimismcreeping into businesses at the moment, 2013 will still be a tough year for the economy.”
ThePeterboroughplantwas formerlyrunbyStIvesWeb, but was taken over by Walstead Investments, which includes Wyndeham, in April 2011, in a £ 20 million deal.
Wyndeham Printing in Storeys Bar Road