Two of three disputes in the car industry, which have led to 21,000 workers going on strike or being laid off, were temporarily settled yesterday. Workers at Austin Morris, Cowley and at Ford, Dagenham, agreed to return to work , at Cowley last night and at Dagenham this morning while negotiations continued. Triumph workers at Coventry will meet today to try to settle their dispute.
The trouble at Cowley started two weeks ago, and 2,000 body workers were suspended from work for applying restrictions. This led to a sit-in at the factory. By yesterday, more than 8,000 workers had been affected, and the Maxi and Marina production lines came to a halt. An offer of £44.20 for day shift workers and £52.73p for night shift workers was rejected , but yesterday the district secretary of the Transport and General Workers Union, Mr David Buckle, said there were hopes for agreement in the next two weeks.
The Triumph stoppage started with a pay dispute by 70 axle assembly men. The company refused to negotiate until normal working was resumed, and 6,500 workers have been laid off at Coventry and 1,500 at Liverpool over the past week.