Also in Coventry the labour troubles in British Leyland’s Triumph car plant, which has brought another complete standstill in vehicle production, became even more deeply entrenched yesterday.
A mass meeting of the shopfloor workers who are laid off voted not to cross the picket lines of 1000 assembly track-workers now on strike over a demand for payment for time lost wheni they were made idle during a recent strike by control room operators. Yesterday Mr Eddie McGarry, the shop stewards’ chairman for Rover Triumph, gloomily predicted: “It looks like being a long dispute.”
Mr Dick Perry, deputy managing director of Rover Triumph, appealed for a return to work and said that foreign competition also was taking a growing share of the market in Britain and overseas manufacturers had large stocks of cars here. He added: “Our stocks are terribly low, down to a couple of weeks’ supply for most models.”
Triumph car production at Liverpool is also being severely affected and in all more than 9,000 workers in Coventry and on Merseyside are either on strike or laid off. Triumph is now in the third week of its shutdown, with production losses amounting to £10m.