Jobs at risk at Marston’s as canning line moves from Bedford to Burton

UK brewer and pub operator Marston’s has announced that it will move the bottling and canning line currently located at its Bedford brewery to its site in Burton-upon-Trent, putting up to 40 jobs at risk.

Marston’s acquired the Eagle Brewery in Bedford and the majority of Charles Wells’ beer brands in May last year in a deal worth £55 million.

It is set to invest £8 million in a “new state-of-the-art line” at its Albion Brewery in Burton-upon-Trent.

This move will mean that between 30 and 40 jobs are under threat, with those affected expected to be offered either voluntary redundancy or “other opportunities in the business,” according to Richard Westwood, Marston’s managing director, speaking to the BBC.

He added: “We have spent nine months looking at this, because one of the original intentions was to see if we could refurbish the line, but that is not going to be possible”.

He did, however, state that the Eagle Brewery was “100% safe” and that the UK brewer would continue to invest in it.

“Over the next two to three years, we may see more jobs here than we currently have,” he said.

The Morning Advertiser reports that those affected work on the small-scale packaging lines at the Bedford brewery, with brewery staff and those operating the larger packaging lines remaining with the company. The site currently employs 150 members of staff in total.

A spokesperson for Marston’s added: “The company is entering into a consultation period with approximately 30 to 40 employees at the Eagle Brewery, in Bedford, where it has a similar production function. Those people affected by this have been notified. Brewing operations at Bedford are not affected”.

Marston’s operates six breweries in the UK and has an estate of 1,500 pubs across the country.

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