England

Banknote firm to shut Dunstable and Basingstoke sites

The world's largest banknote printer has announced plans to shut two of its UK sites, in Dunstable and Basingstoke, which unions fear could lead to up to 150 job losses.

De La Rue has announced plans to move its Security Print production in Dunstable to Gateshead.

Manufacturing at De La Rue Holographics in Basingstoke is to move to Westhoughton, near Bolton.

Union Unite said there were concerns about the 150 staff at the two sites.

'Sad news'

But De La Rue said it was too early to say how many jobs would be lost and it hoped many staff could be relocated.

Louisa Bull, Unite officer for De La Rue members, said: "The announcement will come as sad news for the local communities in Basingstoke and Dunstable.

"Unite will be working hard to get the best deal possible for our members facing redundancy and also be exploring the company's offer of relocation opportunities to other plants across the UK."

A spokesman for De La Rue, which prints notes for the Bank of England and 150 other countries, said: "It is envisaged that this relocation will be completed within 18 months.

"An update will be given with De La Rue's half year results at the end of November.

"This proposal is subject to employee consultation and the process is now under way."

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