Somerset

Date set for Bridgwater's Co-operative centre's closure

Co-operative food shop
Image caption The new centre will serve Co-operative and Somerfield stores across Bristol and South Wales

The Co-operative distribution centre in Bridgwater is set to close in August.

It was announced in September that two distribution centres, one at Huntworth Business Park and another at Chelston, Somerset, were to close.

The move is due to the Co-operative Group's takeover of Somerfield, which has more shops in Bristol.

It will see a total of 731 jobs being transferred to a regional distribution centre at Avonmouth, which is expected to open by 2012.

The Co-op said efforts would be made to redeploy as many of the 421 staff based at Huntworth Business Park as possible, including some to the Chelston depot until that one closes.

It said there would be some redundancies.

'Exemplary' work

From August, deliveries from Bridgwater will transfer to other sites, including Andover in Hampshire and Chelston.

Mark Leonard, Co-operative Group's regional head of logistics, said: "We are realigning our distribution network in the south west as our new depot at Andover becomes operational later this year.

"These changes are to ensure we can continue to operate efficiently, while maintaining an excellent service to our stores.

"As volumes would reduce significantly, unfortunately there would be redundancies at Huntworth.

"It is in no way a reflection on the hard work, carried out on our behalf by the Wincanton staff there, which has been exemplary."

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