The Southampton Ford Transit van factory has closed
Production of the iconic Ford Transit van has moved to Turkey, the move has resulted in a loss of over 500 jobs. The final Ford Transit Van came off the production line at the Ford Southampton Factory. More than 4,000 people once worked at this particular Ford factory.
The closure of the Swaythling plant was announced in October of 2012, alongside the intention to move the production of the extremely iconic Ford Van to Turkey, where costs are said to be extremely lower than they are in the United Kingdom, the Ford company recently explained.
When the announcement of the closure was first announced, Unions had called it a betrayal, with one factory worker saying that he believed the backbone of Britain had gone with the closure of this plant.
The Ford Transit van had been produced at the Swaythling plant for over 40 years, producing over two million Ford transits
The Ford Transit van had been produced at the Swaythling plant for over 40 years and during this time has produced two million Ford Transit vans. Ford explained that the majority of the 531 workers that were employed by the Swaythling factory have taken voluntary redundancy. Ford have employed 134 of their workers at the Company’s vehicle refurbishment plant at the existing site, whilst a brand new £12m vehicle distribution centre is also being created at the Southampton docks. 41 Ford employees have been assigned to different areas of the company’s business and others have opted for early retirement.
One worker expressed that he is out of a job, although they are calling it voluntary redundancy, he does not see it as voluntary.
The Ford company have also recently shut down a tooling and stamping operation in Dagenham, which has affected a further 750 jobs. Ford have also said that these employees have taken early retirement, accepted redundancy or been redeployed elsewhere within the Ford company.