York & North Yorkshire

Tesco and former Stobart drivers end long-running dispute

Protesting lorry drivers
Image caption The drivers held a number of protests against their redundancy

Former Tesco delivery drivers who claim they were unfairly sacked by haulage firm Eddie Stobart have reached an out-of-court settlement with the company.

The 184 drivers were made redundant in 2012 when Stobart won the contract for Tesco's Doncaster distribution centre.

The case was due to be heard at an employment tribunal in Sheffield on Monday before the deal was struck.

Neither the company nor the drivers' union Unite would comment on the details of the settlement.

The dispute began when Eddie Stobart Ltd (ESL) took over the supermarket's distribution operation in August 2012.

ESL announced job losses following a reorganisation of the business.

Drivers took industrial action which ended in January 2013 when they accepted an improved redundancy package from ESL.

Last August, the former drivers staged protests outside Tesco depots in Doncaster, Goole and Widnes, claiming they had been unfairly dismissed.

In a statement at the time, Tesco said: "When we took the decision to transfer the drivers to ESL in 2012, we did everything we could to offer them all alternative roles at Tesco."

Although details of the final settlement have not been disclosed, a Stobart spokesman said the firm had "reached a without-prejudice settlement with the drivers in Doncaster".

A Unite spokesman said only about 45 drivers had since found other jobs.

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