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Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Job losses likely after takeover of Carlisle firm

NINETEEN jobs are likely to go at Border Esh Construction, the new company formed when Esh Group bought Border Construction of Carlisle in April.

Staff were told this week that three admin positions at the former Border Construction head office in Burgh Road Industrial Estate were at risk.

Eight posts are vulnerable with the proposed closure of Border’s plant depot at Lochmaben, between Annan and Lockerbie.

Esh prefers to hire plant as and when it is needed, rather than run its own fleet.

And another eight jobs are at risk at Finlaysons, a subsidiary specialising in smaller roofing, painting and joinery work at Galashiels in the Borders.

The company is entering a formal 30-day consultation period on the redundancies.

Regional managing director Simon Phillips said that staff whose jobs were at risk were being interviewed to discuss their options.

Some will be offered work elsewhere within the County Durham-based group, although this might mean relocating.

He added: “These are regrettable redundancies.

“It is very unfortunate for the people affected but it is an inevitable consequence when you combine two businesses with two head offices which have different ways of doing things.”

He stressed that Border Esh was also recruiting – it has vacancies in Cumbria for an estimating manager, contracts manager and an estimating assistant.

And across the group it has created 70 additional posts including 20 at senior and managerial level as it reaps the benefits of the revival in the construction sector.

Esh Group already employed around 1,000 people and had a turnover of £200m even before it bought Border, which added 143 employees.

Border Construction undertook projects across a wide range of sectors including education, health, public buildings, social housing and commercial build.

Recent schemes included an £18m extension and refurbishment of Trinity School in Carlisle and a £10m student accommodation complex on the site of the old Kangol factory in Denton Holme, Carlisle.

Border also built five replacement fire stations for Cumbria County Council and, further afield, the Robert Burns National Birthplace Museum in Ayrshire.

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