More than 10,000 workers in the Midlands were laid off last night as the white-collar unions dispute with the British Steel Corporation gathered momentum. The lay-offs were a direct result of a strike by 450 clerks at the Pressed Steel-Fisher plant at Castle Bromwich. Production of Minis and 1800s at the Austin section of British Leyland Motors at Longbridge came to a standstill, putting 4500 out of work. Production of the two models restarted on Monday after a strike by British Road Services delivery drivers.
All production at the Pressed Steel-Fisher plant stopped at the end of yesterday’s day shift, and 6,000 employees, about three quarters of the labour force were laid off indefinitely. There were fears last night that the strike may spread today to the PSF plant at Common Lane, Birmingham, where the clerical workers union has another 150 members.