Leith firm set to close after four decades

Bredero Shaw at Leith docks

Bredero Shaw at Leith docks

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A GLOBAL pipe-coating firm which has been based at Leith Docks for four decades is set to close, leaving scores of people looking for work.

Bredero Shaw blamed a downturn in North Sea activity for the move, which will see the plant close from August.

The pipe-coating company employs 75 full-time staff, as well as 80 contractors from agencies, all of whom will no longer be required.

There is some hope orders can be secured once the industry picks up, which would mean an all-out closure at Leith would not be necessary.

It is understood the Leith base is the only one of the firm’s premises across the world that will be affected.

Workers spoke of their disappointment at the move, while local councillors also expressed regret.

The firm has had a presence in the area for more than 35 years, with bosses saying a more comprehensive announcement will be made later this year.

Andy Mackie, the company’s regional human resources manager, told the Evening News: “We announced to our staff that our existing contracts under order will be concluded towards the end of August and we currently have no additional work secured for Leith beyond this point.

“This is due to a decline in activity in the North Sea sector.

“This situation may result in a number of employment casualties.

“We will be making a further announcement to our employees in early May when we expect the picture to be clearer.”

One worker at the plant, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “This will make everyone on the books redundant and put many agency workers out of a job.

“It is a great shame as the company has kept lots of local people in work for many years.”

The pipe-coating manufacturer hit the headlines last June when three workers were rushed to hospital after one collapsed suffering from breathing difficulties.

The trio were understood to have been using hydraulic acid to clean the facility.

Although the downturn has caused this closure, the firm was previously credited with bringing success to Forth Ports, helping boost overall profits in the area.

Leith councillor Gordon Munro said: “This is bad news not just for those directly involved but the area as a whole because there will be a ripple effect.”