Decisive action

THE loss of 515 jobs at the Alcan plant in Lynemouth is not just a disaster for south east Northumberland – it will have a county-wide knock-on effect.

If this enormous blow isn’t cushioned by immediate action from the Government, the aftershocks could be felt for years to come, potentially threatening thousands of jobs in a myriad of support industries.

That’s why the Northumberland Gazette, as part of a wider effort by its publishers Northeast Press, is backing the growing chorus of concern to try to persuade ministers such as Dr Vince Cable to act – and act now.

Delegates from the county council, as well as our MPs, are already making firm representations to our national decision-makers in a bid to get them to understand the degree of our economic plight.

While Alcan is the biggest single loss of jobs to hit the private sector in Northumberland in decades, Amble and its surrounding area took a massive hit with 230 jobs axed at Northumberland Foods over the course of 18 months.

And only this week, Alnwick’s famous House of Hardy factory has announced it too will be making staff redundant.

This only adds to the public sector woes seen at Northumberland County Council over the last two years, which have led to more than 1,300 posts being mothballed.

Something has to be done, and quickly, to offset this worrying trend of cuts and closures.

If not, Northumberland could suffer the effects for a generation to come.