Archive : £50m short-term aid for British Leyland

By Maurice Corina Industrial Editor

Bankers’ guarantees up to a maximum of £50m will be offered to the British Leyland Motor Corporation and its subsidiaries by the Government under Section 8 of the industry Act 1972.

Parliamentary approval for this short-term financial assistance will be sought next Wednesday when Mr Wedgwood Benn, Secretary of State for Industry, will make a further statement on the group’s capital requirements. He is also expected to name the team to help Sir Don Ryder, the Cabinet’s industrial adviser, in identifying longer term requirements.

These will determine the size of the proposed state investment in the equity shares. The ceiling of £50m on state guarantees for British Leyland’s borrowings over and above present facilities represents one third of the Department of Industry’s statutory limit on any sums and liabilities paid to industry as Section 8 aid. Bank guarantees, not large enough to require special parliamentary consent (which covers aid of £5m or more), have recently been given to Alfred Herbert and Ferranti, pending studies of their problems.

Pay claim suspended: A group of trade unionists at the Cowley car assembly plant agreed yesterday to suspend their pay claim
“as a gesture of goodwill in the present financial plight of British Leyland”. They have also offered to work essential overtime without pay until the company’s finances improve.

The decision was announced by Mr Paul Hogan, senior process engineer, who is on the factory committee of the Oxford branch of TASS, the supervisory section of the Amalgamated Union of Engineering Workers.

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

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