Lloyds Banking Group to axe 200 jobs in Romford

Lloyds Banking Group (LBG) is to axe more than 200 Romford jobs in a “body blow” to workers, one of its staff unions said.

As well as closing its credit operating centre in St James House, Eastern Road, sites in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Scunthorpe will also shut, with the loss of almost 1,000 posts, Accord revealed today (Tuesday).

More than 30,000 jobs will now have been lost in the past three years at LBG, which is 40.2 per cent owned by the taxpayer.

Accord general-secretary Ged Nichols said: “Today’s confirmation is a body blow to Romford, not just for the Accord members who work there but for the whole town. The vast majority of the employees live locally and, whilst Accord will seek to assist those who wish to work at alternative Lloyds sites, the reality is this will be difficult - particularly for those with caring commitments.

“Romford is an area that cannot afford to lose the high-quality jobs that will go as a result of this announcement.

“Whilst Accord has informed LBG that it must do everything possible to avoid compulsory redundancies and work with us to provide support and guidance to those affected, the truth is that even those who volunteer to go will find it difficult to find alternative employment in these difficult economic times.”

Lloyds confirmed that 990 jobs are to go as part of its previously announced strategic review.

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A statement said: “The roles will come from within group operations, group executive functions, risk, wholesale and insurance divisions. Lloyds Banking Group is committed to working through these changes with employees in a careful and sensitive way.

“Where it is necessary for employees to leave the company, it will look to achieve this by offering voluntary redundancy. Compulsory redundancies will always be a last resort. In fact, during 2009, 2010 and 2011, slightly less than 50 per cent of the role reductions made as part of integration have led to people leaving the group through redundancy. There are 990 role reductions from today’s announcement.”

David Fleming, national officer of union Unite, said: “Unite believes that this announcement is inappropriate as the full requirement of the group’s divestment is unknown. Unite will be holding discussions with the bank, with the objective of minimising the need for job cuts following this further restructuring. The organisation must do more to offer redeployment opportunities to their workers.

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