Firm drops bombshell with 115 jobs axed at factory

WORKERS at luxury clothing company Aquascutum were ashen-faced and in tears after hearing they had lost their jobs.

Shock, disbelief and worry over how they will meet their next mortgage payment, was etched on the faces of workers at the firm’s factory in Princewood Road, Corby. Some of them had been working there for more than 40 years.

They were called to the factory at 11am yesterday when administrators appointed on behalf of the company dropped the bombshell that the factory is shutting and there is no money to cover next week’s monthly pay cheques, holiday pay or salary in lieu of notice.

After carrying out a detailed review of the company’s financial position, administrators FRP Advisory, decided the Corby factory was not viable because of losses and lack of funding.

Lillian McGowan, 57, who lives on the Beanfield estate, Corby, said: “People are gutted and they’re shocked. Even after the company went into administration I expected that somehow it would be rescued but we were told that it’s all over. We were finished on the spot.”

Pamela Thompson, of Barnwell Street, Kettering, has worked for the company for 26 years. She said: “I just feel sick. We were just told that the factory was closing and that there was no money. This is a top drawer company and it has let us down.”

Shop steward at the factory Debbie Gill, of The Lawns, Corby, said: “I have worked at this factory, on and off, for 30 years. Aquascutum had a loyal workforce which stood by the company through takeovers and strikes, and this is how we are treated. People are devastated and worried about how they are going to keep the roof over their head.”

Amy Boss, 30, who lives on the Ise Lodge estate, Kettering, was in tears after the meeting. She said: “I’ve worked for Aquascutum for 11 years and I really don’t know what I’m going to do. I have a child to look after and I don’t know how I’m going to pay my bills. It’s shocking.”

Corby councillor David Sims said: “My thoughts go to the people who have lost their jobs. It’s devastating.”

Andy Sawford, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Corby, said: “Just a few days ago the administrators said there is worldwide interest in buying Aquascutum, so the question I am asking them is why have they so hastily closed the factory?”

FRP Advisory confirmed the joint administrators are unable to meet outstanding wages.