Glen Dimplex Portadown closure 'a huge blow' for employees and economy
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Employeers of the heating and ventilation manufacturer were told on Thursday of proposals to reduce the number of the company’s all-Ireland sites from five to three with the Portadown base ear-marked for closure.
The news has been met by widespread concern and disappointment from public representatives.
Upper Bann representatives Carla Lockhart MP and Diane Dodds MLA said the “devastating” news will have a major impact on many families and the local economy.
In a joint statement, the DUP representatives said: “Glen Dimplex has been part of the fabric of the Portadown area for many years and is known internationally for is expertise in heating, ventilation, flame, precision cooling and customer appliances.
"Many of the staff are long-serving employees with many having secured employment and remained for the duration of their career.
"We believe that some of the roles will be transitioned to the Newry plant which we are encouraged by, however we want to see the retention of the Portadown facility and a commitment to invest in this area. We trust that every effort will be made to re-deploy the staff and to support them along this difficult path.
"We will be writing to the Economy Minister to see what investment can be made to cover the loss of these jobs and ensure a speedy re-employment of this talent.
"For those who are affected, we have offices in Banbridge, Portadown and Lurgan. Our door is always open with regards navigating the jobs and benefits options. We have made representation to the company concerning the Portadown footprint and the need to retain it.
"Upper Bann has a large business base many of whom in recent days have experienced growth and expansion it is disappointing to hear of this bad news story and our thoughts are very much with the those involved and their families. With the continued cost of living pressures we can only imagine the blow that this is to many.”
Alliance Upper Bann MLA Eóin Tennyson said his thoughts are with the affected workers and their families.
"Glen Dimplex is a significant employer in Upper Bann, and I will be engaging with management and the Department for the Economy to gain a full understanding of the rationale for this proposed course of action and to ascertain what mitigations will be put in place.
"Any closure of this scale would be a huge blow for the staff and for the local economy in Portadown. Alliance will continue to advocate for those affected to the best of our ability.”