Textron shuts UK fastener factory

Textron Fastening Systems today announced that it intends to close its factory in Welwyn Garden City in the UK, with the loss of approximately 225 jobs.

Textron Fastening Systems (TFS) today announced that it intends to close its factory in Welwyn Garden City, with the loss of approximately 225 jobs.

TFS, part of global multi-industry group Textron, is proposing to take the action ‘as a result of the worst global slowdown that the manufacturing industry has seen for the last 30 years and the resulting fall in orders.’

Most of the proposed redundancies will be from the manufacturing side of the business, with the bulk of production moving to the company’s other UK plant in Warrington or outsourced over the next 12 months.

TFS proposes to retain approximately 120 jobs in the R&D and sales departments, although these will be relocated from the present site on Mundells to other premises when the factory closes.

John Stephenson, European Operations Director of Textron Fastening Systems said: ‘This has been a very difficult decision, but Welwyn Garden City is working well below its capacity and is making a significant operating loss compared to our other sites. We had little option but to propose the closure of the plant in order to maintain and improve efficiencies across the business.’

The closure of the site – which manufactures blind fasteners for customers in the automotive, electronics and aerospace industries – is part of a group-wide restructuring programme. All of Textron Fastening Systems’ factories have been subject to a stringent review over the past 12 months, identifying areas in which savings can be made to maintain and strengthen the company’s position in its marketplace.

Fastening systems have been manufactured at the Welwyn Garden City site since the 1960s. Originally known as Avdel, Textron acquired the site in 1994.

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