Norcross jobs threat

Jobs fears: How the civil service site at Norcross used to look before jobs were shifted to other sites. Clarke House is in the centre

Jobs fears: How the civil service site at Norcross used to look before jobs were shifted to other sites. Clarke House is in the centre

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Up to 65 jobs are under threat at a former civil service site in Blackpool.

Union officials representing workers at the Hewlett Packard printing site, at Clarke House, Norcross, are due to meet management today to discuss their future.

The move comes after owners of the building, Trillium, notified HP that its lease on the building will end in February 2016.

It took over the site and the Department for Work and Pensions moved jobs away to Peel Park and Warbreck.

Workers at the site, who used to be employed by the Department of Works and Pensions before aspects of its work were privatised and the site sold off, fear it could mean the end of printing jobs in Blackpool.

One worker said: “We are all worried that this could be the end here.

“The site has been cleared for housing and this is the only building left so you can understand that the developers would not want people living here looking at this big black building and that they could get a lot of money for knocking it down and building houses here, too.

“We are all worried that they will move the printing work from here to HP’s other offices in Washington in Tyne and Wear or Glasgow.

“HP has yet to win the contract to carry on the printing work which is due to run out, so everything is up in the air.”

A spokesman from the Public and Commercial Services Union said: “The workers at Clarke House were told by the management on Friday about the end of the lease in February 2016.

“We are obviously concerned about the people and their jobs there and representatives hope to be talking to managers this week.

“They produce important document such as the forms for JSA, DLA, Personal Independence Payments and DWP forms for Northern Ireland, so it is a key site.”

A spokesman for Hewlett Packard said the company was reviewing the situation and no decisions had yet been taken but the management at the site took the decision to tell the workers as soon as possible about the lease termination.

She said: “Our priority is to keep our employees informed and deliver service to our clients.”