Kodak to close Morley factory with loss of 210 jobs

Breaking news...
Breaking news...

Hundreds of jobs will be lost in Morley after Kodak announced plans to close its factory in the town.

Today (Monday) Kodak announced plans to shut its site in Howley Park Road Estate as part of a restructuring of its worldwide plate production facilities.

The factory, which is due to shut in mid to late 2015, currently employs 210 people.

The union Unite has called for an urgent meeting with Kodak management following the announcement.

Regional officer Chris Daly said: “This is terrible news for the workers and their families, and a blow to manufacturing capacity in Leeds.

“Unite understood that the Leeds site was a profitable one for Kodak and we are seeking an urgent meeting with the management to discuss the situation.

“This is a significant loss of skilled jobs that can’t easily be replaced.”

In its announcement, Kodak said it had upgraded sites in Germany and China, and would phase out production in Morley over the next 18 months.

It will begin to move production from the site, which makes printing plates for the commercial printing industry, in the third quarter of 2014.

General manager of worldwide plate operations Robert Price said: “Our employees in Leeds have a long history of capably serving our customers with the quality products they have come to expect from Kodak.

“However, with the investments we made last year in the new high-speed manufacturing line, the capacity of our Osterode plant [in Germany] can now meet future demand growth from Europe, the Middle East and Africa.”

It said employees would be offered separation benefits and transition services, but did not give further details.

Unite said an unspecified number of jobs are due to be lost this summer, with the remaining workforce losing their employment in the middle of 2015.

See this week’s Morley Observer for more details.