Japanese car giant Honda has announced it is to cut 800 jobs after a slump in demand across Europe. Workers at the firm's plant in Swindon, which employs 3,500 people, were told the news this morning.
Honda, which has been making cars in the UK since 1992, has never had job losses before in this country, but it said demand for cars in Europe, including Spain, Italy and Greece, had fallen by a million in the past year.
The company gave the statutory 90-day notice of consultation and said it would seek to avoid compulsory redundancies.
500 staff are starting work at Honda in Swindon today. The Japanese car giant is introducing a second shift in response to growing demand. The company predicts the move will double production at the plant, with 180,000 cars coming off the production line by the end of the year.
It brings the total of workers at Swindon to 3,500. Last year, staff were on reduced hours after the Japanese earthquake and floods in Thailand affected the supply of parts.