Normal working was resumed yesterday at the British Motor Corporation’s Austin plant at Longbridge, Birmingham, where 2,500 workers were laid off on Tuesday as a result of a one-day unofficial strike of 27 viewer marshallers over a pay claim. Negotiations on the men’s claim are to be continued.
Strike Over Shop Steward’s Car
FROM OUR OWN CORRESPONDENT
BIRMINGHAM. Nov. 4
The most extraordinary of this year’s long series of unofficial stoppages in the Midland motor industry broke out today at a branch factory of the Rover Company, Ltd., where 25 workers staged a sit-down strike because their shop steward was refused permission by the management to take his private car to be serviced in the firm’s time. A company spokesman said:
“Wild cat’ is the only word for this one; it is quite irresponsible. Coming at a time when our order books are full and we are working flat out it amounts almost to sabotage.”
The strikers, mainly sheet metal workers, are employed at Rover’s Edgbaston factory, which produces components for Land Rovers. The management said that if the stoppage was prolonged, production at the main works at Solihull would be affected. It was hoped that the men would resume work tomorrow.
The Rover spokesman continued: “The shop steward asked for permission to absent himself during the firm’s time to have his car serviced. We felt it was an unreasonable request, and refused it. The men then staged a sit-down strike. This stoppage is quite irresponsible. ‘Wildcat’ is the only word for it.”