Burton's closes Moreton biscuit works despite cash offer

Burton's biscuit factory
Image caption More than 200 jobs will go at Burton's biscuit factory

Burton's Foods was offered a £450,000 grant from Wirral Council to retain its biscuit manufacturing operation in the borough, it has emerged.

The biscuit manufacturer announced earlier this year it would close its site in Moreton and transfer production to its factory in Edinburgh.

On Friday it confirmed it would cease biscuit production but keep a chocolate refinery, saving about 60 jobs.

More than 200 jobs are now set to go at the site.

Wirral Council has confirmed it offered to pay Burton's Foods a grant to retain its full Moreton operation.

'Angry' MP

It is the top amount allowed under European competition regulations, but was not enough to convince the Burton's board.

Labour MP Angela Eagle welcomed the decision to keep a chocolate refinery on Friday, but said she was angry the company had not accepted the full rescue package.

She said: "The company was presented with a viable plan to protect most of the jobs. I'm angry that they've chosen to ignore it."

The remaining jobs - 51 in the refinery and nine other posts - have been saved at the plant and some posts could be open to workers who wish to transfer to an outsourced packing operation in Liverpool.

The company has also pledged a £2.8m capital investment in the plant.

Unite said the deal was "the best possible outcome" for members.

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