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Swindon MP: Honda job cuts 'distressing'

The Conservative MP for South Swindon, Robert Buckland, pledged to help those affected by job cuts at the city's Honda car manufacturing plant:

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Today's announcement by Honda of job losses in Swindon are distressing but I will be doing everything possible to... http://t.co/LTHerycd

Honda workers 'gutted' about job cuts

Staff at Honda's Swindon plant have expressed dismay at news that 800 jobs are to be cut.

General associate Malcolm Hanley, who started working for the car manufacturer in 2007, said:

I'm gutted, it's my work and I don't know what I'm going to do. If I'm getting fired, where am I going to go?

Colin Brain, who works at the engine site as a floating operator, said the announcement had come as a big surprise, especially as the company announced a £267 million investment programme only last September:

It seems like one minute they're your best friend and the next minute they don't like you very much. It's very strange.

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Union slams Honda job losses

The Unite union has called Honda's decision to cut 800 jobs at its Swindon plant a 'hammer blow' to UK manufacturing and the local economy.

Unite national officer Tony Murphy said: "It's a tragedy for our members and their families.

"There's no doubt these cuts will have a significant knock-on impact on the supply chain, and on local shops and services .

"That is why we intend to save as many jobs as possible.

"Unite will oppose any compulsory job losses. We expect Honda to negotiate meaningfully with the union in order to mitigate the impact of these cuts.

"Unite will be meeting with our local union reps in the coming days to discuss the company's proposals."

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Honda 'committed to UK' despite job losses

Sustained conditions of low demand in European markets make it necessary to re-align Honda's business structure.

As such, Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) will enter into formal consultation with its associates to consider these changes and the proposal that it will reduce the workforce by 800 associates by Spring 2013.

Honda remains fully committed for the long term to its UK and European manufacturing operations. However, these conditions of sustained low industry demand require us to take difficult decisions.

We are setting the business constitution at the right level to ensure long-term stability and security.

– Ken Keir, executive vice president of Honda Motor Europe

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