THE closure of Shaw’s Shop Direct site remains on the cards despite 200 jobs being saved at another company location at Raven Mill, Chadderton.
And with only 12 months until Shop Direct transfers operations at its Linney Lane distribution centre for the East Midlands, the company has been criticised for “non-existent” communication.
Despite a deal to transfer the 215,000 sq ft Raven Mill returns centre to Clipper Logistics (described as a leading provider of value-added logistics solutions and e-fulfilment to the retail sector) around 200 staff will still be put on the dole.
Many hundreds more face redundancy in Shaw with no sign of any hope of a reprieve.
Shaw councillor Howard Sykes, leader of the opposition on Oldham Council, told the Correspondent he was pleased people from Raven have managed to transfer to another company.
But he added: “I am not aware anything similar is on offer for Shaw.
“The communication about matters running up to the closure are non-existent despite lots of promises when they made the announcement and in meetings I attended.”
Shop Direct declined to provide a quote about the future of their Shaw operation.
However, they have previously stated they have been trying to identify opportunities to secure roles and the future of sites at Little Hulton, Salford in addition to Shaw.
When announced in April 2018, the company said the closures and transfer to the East Midlands Gateway near Castle Donington would impact 1,177 permanent Shop Direct staff and 815 agency workers.
As part of an 18-month project prior to the bombshell news, Shop Direct concluded that limited accessibility, layout and loading restrictions, coupled with a lack of space, meant these centres wouldn’t meet the group’s future operational ambitions.
All 403 Shop Direct colleagues based at the Raven Mill site will transfer to Clipper Logistics who will operate returns on behalf of Shop Direct at the Raven Mill site until this activity migrates to the digital retailer’s new fulfilment centre in 2021.
Following completion of the migration of Shop Direct’s returns activity, it is Clipper Logistics’ intention to retain up to 200 Raven Mill workers for separate ongoing operational activity at the site for its other retail clients.
Phil Hackney, group operations director at Shop Direct and co-chair of the joint taskforce, said: “We believe it’s a positive move for our colleagues and the community.
“Our priority continues to be working in partnership with the joint taskforce to give affected colleagues across all our Greater Manchester fulfilment sites the training, development and other types of support they need to help them prepare for the future.”