Over 1,300 jobs at Alstom’s Derby train factory hang in the balance as the facility has “no confirmed workload beyond the first quarter of 2024”. 550 permanent jobs and 780 temporary jobs are at risk.
The news was revealed as Alstom announced its half-year results yesterday (Wednesday 15 November). The move is part of a larger reorganisation aimed at improving the industrial group’s finances.
While its sales are going up on the whole, the company’s shares dropped last month, and it is battling negative cash flows. The firm is seeking to raise cash from investors.
An Alstom spokesperson said: “No committed way forward has yet been found and therefore it is with deep regret that we must now begin to plan for a significant reduction in activity at Derby by entering a period of collective consultation on potential redundancies at Litchurch Lane.
“We will fully support our dedicated colleagues during this exceptionally difficult time.
“We look forward to fulfilling our commitments on HS2 and successfully competing for rolling stock opportunities across the UK in the future.
“We remain open-minded as to the future of non-production functions located at Litchurch Lane and to potential future alternative uses for the Derby site.
“We will begin an extensive review of options, and will fully involve our stakeholders in this process.”
Litchurch Lane factory is the UK’s largest train plant. While Alstom also has sites at Widnes, Crewe, Ilford and Plymouth, it’s factory at Derby is the only British site capable of designing, building, and testing trains. Alstom bought Litchurch Lane from Bombardier in 2021.
A Department for Transport spokesperson said: “Rail manufacturing is an important part of the UK economy and we will work closely with Alstom as it continues to deliver its contractual commitments, as we do with all rolling stock manufacturers.
“While this is a commercial matter for the company, we have already set up a dedicated cross-government taskforce to properly support workers at Alstom during what will be a concerning time.”
Image credit: Alstom