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Closure of Durham Walkers crisp factory sees loss of more than 350 jobs


The Walkers plant in Peterlee, County Durham, is set to close

The Walkers plant in Peterlee, County Durham, is set to close

The Walkers plant in Peterlee, County Durham, is set to close

More than 350 jobs will be lost following confirmation that a Walkers crisp factory is to close.

PepsiCo said the plant in Peterlee, County Durham will shut at the end of the year, and production moved to other sites.

Tracey Foster, Peterlee manufacturing director at PepsiCo UK, said: "Following a period of consultation with the trade union and other employee representatives, PepsiCo has decided to proceed with the proposal to close the manufacturing site at Peterlee by the end of December 2017.

"We appreciate that this is very difficult news for everyone at the Peterlee site.

"We would like to emphasise that this decision in no way reflects the performance of our colleagues at Peterlee and we remain very grateful for their hard work and commitment.

"Our priority now is supporting and providing assistance to our colleagues who are impacted by this decision as we move into the process of consulting with employees on an individual basis about what this means for them personally.

"Peterlee has been an important site for our business, but the proposal presents significant productivity and efficiency savings crucial for ensuring the long-term sustainable growth of our business in the UK."

Michael Hunt, regional organiser of the GMB union, said: "D espite numerous representations and counter proposals, the company has announced that they intend to go ahead with the proposal to close the Peterlee site on December 31, previously citing efficiency reasons.

"This is devastating news for our members, their families and the local community as a whole.

"GMB will continue to advise and support our members throughout the process."