Monday, September 29, 2003

What happens on Tuesday ? 

Receivers have now been appointed, they are due to start at 7.30am on Tuesday 30th September.
This coincides with a mass meeting in the yard.
Informed opinion would appear to indicate that a buyer for the yard can be found.
The mood remains resolute and determined. We are not about to allow 400 years of shipbuilding in the locality go down the pan.

Receivers to take over yard 

Up to 700 people lined the entrance of Appledore Shipbuilders on Monday, barricading gates and blocking the main entrance with a digger.
Residents from the nearby village of Appledore joined the protest by demonstrating outside the yard.
BBC News Online story

Local community join the sit-in ! 

Monday has seen members of the local community joining the workforce in blockading the yard.
In other news, a delegation is at Labour Party conference to lobby on behalf of the workforce and we have heard that the company has appointed receivers as of today.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

Sit-in at threatened shipyard 

Sit-in at threatened shipyard BBC News Online: 29/09/03

Workers are staging a sit-in at a north Devon shipyard amid fears the site will close with the loss of 550 jobs
The unofficial action at Appledore Shipbuilders, England's oldest commercial ship builder, showed the anger of workers facing redundancy, union leaders said.

Appledore Work In Begins 

The workforce at Appledore Shipbuilders have occupied our workplace in an attempt to save livelihoods.
The ship yard is in Appledore on the River Torridge, North Devon.

The workforce has been on short time working for 15 weeks, taking home 75% of normal earnings when we learned that the yard was to be closed on 30th September.

There has been shipbuilding on The River Torridge for over 400 years.
The loss of Appledore would have a devastating effect on an already ailing local economy.
The loss of the specialised skills at Appledore, the last commercial shipbuilders in England, would truly be economic and strategic madness for an island nation.

Appledore is not a "basket case". This is a viable business with a highly motivated, flexible and skilled workforce. The workforce is determined to preserve the future of the yard through what are short term difficulties.
There is significant amounts of work potentially in the offing and this includes a repeat offer to build a ferry for Caledonian Macbrayne.
If this contract was awarded work could start immediately.

It is recognised that strengthening the management process is vital as we move forward.

Our fight is to preserve the Shipbuilding industry and the heritage and skills that go with it.
An island nation needs a plan for shipbuilding.
Moreover we need to halt the decimation of the countries manufacturing base.
This is not the last roar from a dying industry but a resolute a determined step in creating a viable future.

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