Archive : 650 idle through strike of 31


An unofficial strike of 31 fitters today made 650 workers idle on the Land-Rover production line at the Rover Company’s factory at Solihull, Warwickshire.

An official of the company said that if the dispute was not settled it might be necessary to close the line tomorrow. He added that the fitters complained of unsatisfactory working conditions, including fumes in their shop, but repeated investigation had failed to produce evidence to support the complaints.

Strikers Fume Over A Smell
By Ray Hill

Four hundred car workers had to be sent home yesterdaybecause thirty-one of their colleagues had gone on strike over a mystery
smell. The strikers—their action is unofficial—work at the Rover factory at Solihull Warwickshire. They complained about fumes leaklng into their workshop and other ” unsatisfactory conditions.” Rover officials were called in to investigate. The officials sniffed—but said that apart from ordinary industrial smells they could detect nothing unusual .

“It you smell the fumes again” , the officials said , ‘”report at once and we will call in a factory inspector.”

But the men were not satisfied. One of the strikers put the men’s grievance this way:  “It’s a wretched sort of smell. We’re worried about it. We are determined not to work in the section as long as it continues.”

In addition to the 400 men sent home yesterday, the firm fears that a further 600 will be made idle today unless the dispute is settled . A spokesman said the strike could have ” grave results” for Land-Rover production. The strikers have planned a meeting for tomorrow .

Keith Adams

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