Earlier Closure Likely For Bathgate Vehicle Plant
Leyland’s Bathgate truck plant is likely to close earlier than scheduled following the collapse of the company which bought engines made there, BL planned to keep the 1200 workforce until June next year but because Marshalls & Sons, of Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, has gone bust that is now unlikely.
The disastrous news may well have put paid to the workers hopes for continuing manufacture of engines at Bathgate and saving several hundred jobs. Shop stewards convener Jim Swan succeeded only last week in obtaining a copy of a feasibility study on the project from Marshall’s boss Charles Nickerson.
He said he was hopeful the workers could make a go of it by finding savings Marshalls could not, perhaps by setting up a co-operative. He said ‘I would never ask anybody to get involved in building our engine if there was no sign of it being a success.”
The 98 Series engine has a reputation for reliability, Leyland have used it in their most modern truck, the Roadrunner, but the company plan to buy an alternative engine as soon as production ceases at Bathgate,