City A.M. Reporter
DEFENCE giant BAE Systems is to axe 1,100 jobs and close an aircraft factory in Cheshire, it emerged yesterday.<br /><br />The group said it planned to close its Woodford, Cheshire plant at the end of 2012 with the loss of 630 jobs. Other jobs will go at various sites across the country, including in Farnborough.<br /><br />BAE said the planned cuts followed “a detailed review of the group’s current and future business plans.”<br /><br />The Confederation of Shipbuilding and Engineering Unions (CSEU) said the news was “bitterly disappointing” for workers and local communities.<br /><br />The CSEU’s general secretary, Hugh Scullion, said: “This is bitterly disappointing news for the staff and for the local communities which rely on these jobs.<br /><br />“This is particularly true in the case of the proposed closure of Woodford. The CSEU will work constructively with the company to keep redundancies to a minimum and ensure no compulsory redundancies.<br /><br />“The CSEU believe there is still an opportunity to extend production at the Woodford site.”<br /><br />BAE, whose chief executive is Ian King, said in a statement: “It has been clear since 2003 that the Woodford site had little future beyond the end of Nimrod MRA4 production, and the workforce has been kept informed since that time.<br /><br />“Despite strenuous efforts to achieve further Nimrod production work, there has been none forthcoming. It is intended that there will be a phased run-down of the site in line with the production programme.”<br /><br />BAE employs around 32,800 people in the UK and 106,400 world-wide.