Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Unions in shock over reports of Ford plans to close Bridgend factory

An engineer working at the Ford engine plant near Bridgend (David Jones/PA)
An engineer working at the Ford engine plant near Bridgend (David Jones/PA)

Unions have expressed shock at an expected announcement that car giant Ford is to close one of its UK factories with heavy job losses.

Company officials have flown from the United States to break the news at a meeting on Thursday morning.

Around 1,500 jobs are affected at the plant in Bridgend, South Wales, with many more at companies in the supply chain.

Ford said it would not comment on the speculation.

A Unite spokesman said: “Unite will be meeting Ford first thing tomorrow morning and will comment further once the details of any announcement are known.

“Our priority is our members’ jobs, the communities and livelihoods in the supply chain that Ford Bridgend supports.”

GMB Regional Organiser Jeff Beck said: “We haven’t as yet had any confirmation of any closure but we can confirm we’re meeting with Ford tomorrow and a new agenda has been arranged, which we’re yet to see.

“If our worst fears are confirmed it will mean disaster for both our members in Bridgend and the community at large, who we will stand by the tough thick and thin.

“The ironic part is in the week that Donald Trump is meeting the UK Prime Minister and talking up a special relationship and trade deal with the UK and the US, if the plant does close, the new line is likely to be taken to Mexico by an American company.

“So much for the special relationship Mr Trump.”

Rebecca Long-Bailey, shadow secretary for business, energy and industrial strategy, said: “This is worrying news, first and foremost for Ford employees and their families who are left unsure as to their futures, but also for the jobs across the supply chain and the impact on the local economy in Bridgend.

“Hot off the heels from Honda this would be another devastating blow to our car industry and to the UK’s wider manufacturing base.

“The Government must urgently meet with Ford to secure the plants future.”

The Bridgend plant has been under threat because of falling demand for the two engines it makes, and lower projections for the Dragon engine it is scheduled to start making this year.

It has been manufacturing engines for 40 years.

Unions had expressed fears that 1,000 jobs at the factory could be lost if new contracts were not found.

The site opened in 1980 and covers an area of 60 acres.

Unions have previously warned of a ballot for strikes if compulsory redundancies are made. The news is the latest blow to the UK’s car industry.

Honda has announced plans to shut its Swindon plant in 2021, while fellow Japanese carmaker Nissan reversed a decision to build its new X-Trail vehicle at its Sunderland plant.

Jaguar Land Rover, owned by India’s Tata Motors, is also cutting jobs.

Ford also has an engine plant in Dagenham, Essex, and a plant making transmissions in Halewood, Liverpool.

Ford announced last month that it was cutting 7,000 white collar jobs worldwide, with up to 550 expected in the UK.