Archive : 5200 are idle in piece-work dispute at British Leyland

By Clifford Webb

More British Leyland workers were laid off at Austin-Morris car plants in Birmingham yesterday bringing the total now idle as a result of a pay strike to 5,200. Production of the Mini, 1800 and a new model due for release next month has been brought to a standstill. About 1,000 workers in one of the two main assembly blocks at Longbridge have been on strike since Friday in support of a claim for increased piecework payments.

Management attempts to persuade them to accept an interim award of £3 a week while talks continue on the substitution of a flat day rate for piecework throughout the plant have failed. As a result another 2,700 men have been laid off at Longbridge and 1500 at the Castle Bromwich body-plant.

Production of Jaguar cars was stopped for a second day yesterday by a strike of 300 clerical workers. More than 2,000 employees have been laid off at the company’s two plants in Coventry. The clerks, who are also striking for more money, are expected to return tomorrow. In anticipation of this the company is recalling the remainder of the workforce.

A Jaguar spokesman said last night: “Since the beginning of this year we have had only 12 days output because of a series of strikes by engine workers, machinists and clerks “.

Keith Adams
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