Archive : Car firm appeals to Mrs Castle

By Geoffrey Whiteley

As hopes receded yesterday of an early settlement in the strike of electricians at the Pressed Steel Fisher plant at Cowley, Oxford , which threatens disruption in a large part of the car industry .Mrs Castle, Secretary for Employment and Productivity, was asked to intervene in the dispute.

The request , sent by Mr John Lutyens, managing director of the Pressed Steel Fisher division of British Leyland Motors , was “under consideration” last night, said Mrs Castle’s department. Production at the plant , which supplies car bodies to Rootes, Jaguar, Rover, and British Leyland , has already been disorganised and 4,000 workers are idle. The strikers will attend a special meeting today when an ETU executive council official will address them tonight.

At the Rover car works at Solihull , Warwickshire, production of 2000 and 3500 cars will stop today because of the shortage of car bodies. The plant laid off 800 workers last night , and another 700 may be idle by tonight.

The 130 electricians on strike at the PSF factory hinted yesterday that they might be prepared to compromise in their grievances over a grading decision .


Employment and Productivity Minister Mrs , Barbara Castle was yesterday asked to intervene in an electricians pay strike at the Pressed Stcel-Fishcr factory at Cowley, Oxford, by managing director Mr John Lutyens.

The company produces car bodies for BMC, Jaguar, Rover and Rootes. The strike is expected to make 5000 men idle today, including workers at other Pressed Steel plants, 1,500 at Rovers at Solihull, Warwicks, and 100 at the MG factory at Abingdon , Berks.

Keith Adams
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