Cement works set to close
EIGHTY-SEVEN jobs are on the line after plans to close a cement works were announced. The Barrington cement plant is to be shut down as part of cost cutting measures being put in place by owners Cemex. Gonzalo Galindo, president of Cemex UK, said: The cu
EIGHTY-SEVEN jobs are on the line after plans to close a cement works were announced.
The Barrington cement plant is to be shut down as part of cost cutting measures being put in place by owners Cemex.
Gonzalo Galindo, president of Cemex UK, said: "The current economic climate has driven us to implement efficiencies in all areas of our business, and the closure of Barrington's kiln could help to secure the future of our cement manufacturing business in the UK.
"We will uphold our obligations to this site, including any future restoration commitments."
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Under the plans the site would remain operational during the first quarter of 2009.
After that it may be turned into a distribution centre, though it is thought this would require only 10 staff.
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Mr Galindo added that the firm would be meeting trade unions and representatives of the workers to discuss the plans in more detail.
Chairman of Barrington Parish Council, Tony Fletcher, said the news had received a mixed reaction in the village itself.
He said: "It's obviously sad to see so many jobs going, and to lose such a big part of the history of the village.
"However, we have seen a big increase in the number of heavy lorries going to and from the site in the last few years, so there will be residents who are happy that this will be slowing down.
"People have also had concerns about what comes out of the chimney."
However, Cllr Fletcher was also keen to stress the positive impact the company has had in Barrington.
He said: "They've funded the new sports pavilion and projects at the primary school.
"We will regret losing them as they have made a valuable contribution to Barrington."
Andrew Lansley, MP for South Cambridgeshire, said: "My first concern now is for the position of the staff.
"I will hope to visit the plant and meet staff this week. We have always had a constructive relationship with Rugby Cement, and more recently Cemex, and I hope the company will do all it can to ensure that the interests of the staff are fully met."
Cllr Sebastian Kindersley, who represents Barrington on Cambridgeshire County Council, said the announcement had come as a "major shock" to local people.
He added: "I am very worried about the impact this will have, and my thoughts go out to those families affected at this difficult time.