Doncaster bottle factory strike postponed

Ardagh Glass in Doncaster.
Ardagh Glass in Doncaster.

A strike at a Doncaster bottle factory which was due to start yesterday has been postponed after a last minute pay offer was brokered under conciliation service Acas.

Workers at glass manufacturers Ardagh Glass on Barnby Dun Road have suspended strike action due to start on Friday as they consider a new improved 5.5 per cent two-year pay deal.

The improved offer came after talks in Leeds that finished in the early hours of Friday morning between Unite, the country’s largest union, the GMB union and the management under the auspices of the conciliation service, Acas.

The workers at the sites in Doncaster, Barnsley and Knottingley in Yorkshire, and at Irvine, Ayrshire, will start voting on the offer on Monday.

The ballot closes on Monday, September 2.

The pay offer is three per cent between February this year and January 2014 – two per cent will be paid between February and July and the additional one per cent from August 1.

There will be a further 2.5 per cent paid to the workers between February 2014 and January 2015.

The package also includes a commitment to a review, facilitated by Acas, of ‘committed’ shift working, including a commitment to reduce the amount of committed shift working at all sites.

Ardagh Glass, which made £65 million in pre-tax profits last year, employs 378 workers in Doncaster and 494 in Barnsley.

Tas Sangha, the deputy regional secretary for Yorkshire for workers’ union Unite, said: “The talks concluded in the early hours of the morning and the improved pay offer and the review of ‘committed’ working will now be put to a ballot of our members.

“While our members consider the company’s offer, the series of strikes that were scheduled to start today and due to run until September 9 is suspended.

“Unite would like to thank Acas for their hard work in helping to broker this package overnight.”