Fresh blow for BAE workers in Brough as no new Red Arrows Hawk jets are needed until 2030

By Hull Daily Mail | Posted: 12 Oct 2017

Workers at BAE Systems in Brough have been dealt a fresh blow after the Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed no new Hawk jets are needed by the Red Arrows for another 13 years.

The news comes after Tuesday's announcement that 400 jobs would be lost at the Aerodrome which has been at the heart of the small East Yorkshire town for over a century.

Union officials and MPs called for a new order of Hawk Jets to be approved so parts could be manufactured at the Brough Plant.

However, the MoD has confirmed that no new planes would be needed by the famous display team until 2030.

READ MORE: The 400-job cut bombshell: What will future hold for BAE, a defence giant at the heart of our history?

A spokesman for the MoD said: "The Red Arrows will continue to fly the Hawk T1 for more than a decade and there is no need to replace them until after their end-of-service date."

Five years ago, 381 jobs had to be shelved when BAE Systems moved production of Hawk training aircraft to Lancashire.

Manufacturers on site have continued to make parts for the jets but after a slump in orders, the defence giant was forced to make huge cuts.

Workers were hauled into meetings Tuesday morning to be told the devastating news

A total of 1,915 workers at sites across the UK are set to be made redundant - this includes 400 at Brough Aerodrome.

Neil Daw, staff union convener at the Brough factory, said staff will not go down without a fight after yesterday's announcement.

They wanted to challenge the government to achieve more orders to save jobs.

Meanwhile, East Riding Council leader Steve Parnaby says his authority will help aircraft workers facing an uncertain future in Brough.

READ MORE: 'Shock and devastation': East Yorkshire MPs react to BAE cutting 400 jobs in Brough

Speaking at today's full council meeting, Councillor Parnaby said the news had come as a shock because it had been thought the redundancies would be restricted to BAe's operations in Lancashire.

"What I would say is that we have been here before and we will be here again," he said.

"We are well-rehearsed on this. We will work with the people, with the company and with everyone concerned."

Neil Daw said the job losses would be a "devastating blow" for the site

He said there was a particular concern around the possible impact on external jobs associated with the Brough plant, especially among supply chain companies.

"It's early days yet and there is a consultation period to go through but clearly it's a difficult time for everyone."

In previous large-scale redundancy programmes at the Brough factory, the council has offered re-training schemes to help workers find new jobs.

Speaking yesterday, Mr Daw said they will push the Government to find new orders and potentially save jobs.

He said: "We have proven as a workforce we can surpass expectations, and we are, just coincidentally, down in Parliament next week, so we will push the government and shadow cabinet to gain new orders and save jobs.

“We still have orders to come, such as one with Qatar, so we will make sure we complete these will and keep going in the short term.

“If we don’t continue to produce these aircraft in this country and look to other countries for cheaper contracts then we will lose those skills.

“We have a big intake of young apprentices, developing their skills, and they may suffer too as a result of these cuts. There was a briefing from the unions about what was going to happen and then there was an announcement to staff about what was going to happen.

“I think after the briefing a lot of staff understandably went off. At the forefront of their minds now we are trying to find more details but we might not find out too much more until consultations take place.

“The people who announced it said they don’t want to cut manufacturing here but there are not enough order for the current workforce."

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