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GMB Fight For 350 MOD Jobs

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

GMB Hold Successful Lobby With MP's At Westminster In Campaign To Fight For Jobs And Future At MOD Ashchurch

GMB to form an action group  with support from the wider community and Tewkesbury Borough Council who have asked Defence Minister  to reverse this decision.

A delegation of shop stewards and full time officials from MOD base at Ashchurch attended a formal lobby at Westminster on 23rd April 2013 with Alison Seabeck MP, who is a member of the Shadow Defence Team, and Madeleine Moon MP, who sits on the Select Defence Committee.

Last month Armed Forces Minister Andrew Robathan put 350 jobs under-threat at MOD Ashchurch when he announced without notice that the army will be withdrawing from the defence base at Ashchurch and the site would be sold off as location for  2,000 new homes.

There was  a lobby of Tewkesbury Borough councillors by GMB members and their families during the council meeting held 16th April to gain their support in their fight to keep MOD base at Ashchurch open. The Council has now written to Philip Hammond Secretary of State for Defence asking him to reverse this decision.

Martin Hird, GMB Senior Organiser, said “This lobby of Parliament is part of our campaign to persuade the Government to reverse the decision to close MOD base at Ashchurch. This will save over 350 jobs and avert the devastating impact this closure will have both on the local economy and wider community.

The campaign has now gathered real momentum. We welcome MPs  Madeleine Moon and Alison Seabeck raising GMB’s concerns both in written questions to the House and via the Defence Select Committee.

Both Madeleine Moon and Alison Seabeck are committed to ensure that the campaign to keep Ashchurch open is highlighted and that the Government has to explain the evidence it is using when taking decisions which affect our workforce.

This decision to close MOD Ashchurch has clearly not been thought through.  The MOD has failed to put forward a business case and has not been able to answer questions about the future of the equipment which is located at this site.  The local community is now feeling real anger over this decision and the impact it will have on both their community and the local economy.”

Ian Holmes, union convenor on the site added “The shop stewards welcome the support from Madeleine Moon and Alison Seabeck which will give further impetus to our campaign to fight for the future for Ashchurch.

GMB now intend to form an action group which will also encompass support from the wider community and Tewkesbury Borough Council who have written to the Defence Minister, Philip Hammond, asking him to reverse this decision.”

End

Contact: Martin Hird  martin.hird@gmb.org.uk or  07809 769378 or Bristol Office: 0117 955 4470.  GMB Press Office 07921 289 880

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