Over 4,000 signed schoolgirl’s petition to save factory – but not one M&S executive was prepared to accept it from her at London HQ

Emily Davies with the petition outside M&S HQ (Justin Griffiths-Williams)

A SCHOOLGIRL who launched a petition calling for Pinneys to be saved delivered it to M&S executives in London last week. Or tried to.

Despite Emily Davies’ petition being signed by 4114 people warning the closure will destroy lives and devastate Annan, not one senior manager was prepared to accept it from her.

After keeping her waiting in reception, a public relations officer finally took it from her.

The Sunday Post travelled to London with Emily, 17, on Thursday to deliver her petition calling for a halt to the planned plant closure in Annan.

London headquarters of Marks and Spencer (Justin Griffiths-Williams)
London headquarters of Marks and Spencer (Justin Griffiths-Williams)

Emily, from Dumfries, a member of the Scottish Youth Parliament, set up the online petition as her step-dad Alistair has worked at the factory for 19 years and is among more than 500 people set to lose their jobs if the site shuts.

She said: “This will destroy our community and they need to know that. The people who work there are proud to work there, and proud to supply Marks and Spencer They are part of the company’s family. This will crush the community.”

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After more than seven hours of travelling, Emily and our reporter arrived at M&S HQ close to Paddington station only to be told neither chief executive Steve Rowe or chairman Archie Norman would see her.

Emily and our reporter Hannah Rodger wait and wait) at Marks and Spencer HQ (Justin Griffiths-Williams)

She was told Mr Rowe wasn’t in the office and Paul Willgoss, director of food technology, was on holiday.

The following day, Mr Willgoss said he had not seen the petition but had seen “some detail”.

He said: “At the end of the day this site is owned by Young’s and is run by Young’s.

“I know this is small solace, but it isn’t a reflection on the workers.

“They have been doing a good job and the products they have produced have been good products.”

Pinneys closure: ‘It’s not just me, it’s all my family… This is a disaster for us’