Hundreds of jobs are at risk following UK supermarket Tesco’s decision to close its national distribution centre (NDC) at Fenny Lock near Milton Keynes.
The grocer plans to stop operations at the site and open a new national grocery DC at the Daventry International Rail Freight Terminal, creating uncertainty for the 764 staff who currently work at the warehouse.
A phased reduction of activity at Fenny Lock is expected to begin from June this year, with the proposed final closure set to occur by September, and trade union Usdaw is concerned about the impact the potential rise in unemployment will have.
Joanne McGuiness, Usdaw National Officer, said the news was “absolutely devastating” for its members, their families and the wider Milton Keynes economy.
“Consultations with Tesco will start this week and we will be examining their business case in detail,” she explained.
“Our number one priority will be to save jobs and we’ll be trying to secure as many opportunities as possible at the new depot in Daventry and at other Tesco sites in the area.”
Tesco said the move is necessary because it needs more space in which to store its growing range of products.
Existing Fenny Lock staff will be offered the opportunity to work in Daventry, but with the sites around 30 miles apart, such a transition is unlikely to be welcomed by all of those involved.