- The long-running dispute at Rolls Royce Holdings Plc has finally been resolved
- FTSE 100 listed engine maker shall invest in Lancashire-based plant and transform it into a centre of excellence
Workers of UK-based jet engine maker, Rolls Royce Holdings Plc (LON: RR.) can now breathe a sigh of relief after a long-running dispute has been resolved. The workers have finally accepted the deal from the engine maker which the workers claim that can save 350 jobs and make the Lancashire-based plant a centre of excellence.
The dispute started long back when the FTSE 100-listed engine maker decided to relocate its aeroplane fan blade manufacturing plant to Singapore from Barnoldswick in Lancashire. Members of the Unite union protested against the plans as that would lead to job cuts and started taking industrial action from November.
The new deal, which has been agreed upon, has gathered overwhelming support from the workers at the Lancashire-based plant. The historical Lancashire-based fan manufacturing plant is all set to get a new lease of life as a core manufacturing facility.
(Image Source: © kalkine Group 2021)
Besides, the plant could be transformed into a new centre of excellence going forward. Steve Turner, Unite Assistant General Secretary, hailed the solidarity of the workforce at the Barnoldswick plant. The plant has had a great history and now is expected to have a bright future, post-deal. The union is looking forward to celebrating the 80th anniversary of the historic plant in 2023.
As the entire aviation industry is looking to curb carbon emissions and switching away from conventional technologies, the engine maker is expected to utilise its Lancashire plant to re-establish itself as an important cog in the wheel in the domain of green manufacturing.
The deal between Unite union and the company is a result of the determination, perseverance of the workforce during several weeks of complex and constructive talks regarding the future of fan manufacturing facilities in Barnoldswick and their livelihood.
The engine maker is expected to deliver on its pledge by investing in the future of the Barnoldswick facility. For the evolving needs for skilled engineering capability in manufacturing and supply chains to address climate change, the engine maker is planning to invest in the development of onsite training programmes.
Moving manufacturing out of the country is never a good idea. During slowdowns, only agriculture and manufacturing (product innovation) can boost up to the economy. The engine maker’s decision to overhaul the historic Lancashire aircraft fan manufacturing plant and convert it into a centre of excellence could be a masterstroke for the company.