Lord Stokes, the British Leyland chairman, yesterday issued a special appeal to workers for ‘some give and take” in future negotiations to help the company out of its difficulties.
In talks between British Leyland management representatives and union officials at the giant Austin-Morris plant at Longbridge, Birmingham, yesterday, details of some of the corporation’s present financial problems were spelled out. The shop floor men were told that this year the Longbridge plant alone will have to spend an additional £6m in order to achieve the same output as a year ago.
This included a £13m increase in wages and salaries, a £40m increase in the cost of raw materials, a £2m increase in charges for power and a £1m increase in general rates. The management spokesman made it clear that British Leyland could not recoup all of this increase through increased prices. Much of it must come from higher production and greater efficiency.