1000 jobs at risk of as Tesco announces plans to shut major distribution centre

SUPERMARKET giant Tesco is set to close its Chesterfield distribution centre and withdraw from its Daventry hanging garments shared distribition centre – currently operated by DHL, putting around 1,000 jobs at risk.

The moves come as part of what Tesco is calling “a wider programme of transformation” and will see it reduce its number of distribution centres from 25 to 23.

Tesco is bringing the majority of general merchandising into one distribution centre at Middlesbrough, resulting in the closure of the Chesterfield distribution centre.

The clothing operations currently run by DHL will move to nearby Tesco Daventry distribution centre.

Tesco said the changes will result in redundancies, but that new roles will be created within other sites across the Tesco distribution network. This includes new jobs at Reading and Middlesbrough distribution centres as well as the creation of colleague support roles in the majority of centres.

Matt Davies, Tesco UK&ROI CEO, said: “As the needs of our customers change, it’s vital we transform our business for the future.

“As part of this we are proposing to close two of our distribution centres in the UK. These changes will help to simplify our distribution operations so we can continue to serve our customers better.

“Our priority throughout this process has been our colleagues and we will continue to do all we can to support them at this time.”

Joanne McGuinness, Usdaw national officer, says: “This is devastating news for the staff at Welham Green and Chesterfield distribution centres. Usdaw officials and senior reps were on-site today to support and advise members at this difficult time. We will now enter into consultation talks with the company where we will look closely at the business case for these proposed closures.

“Our priority is to save jobs and keep as many staff employed in the business as possible. The proposed management restructure in all Tesco distribution centres will result in jobs being put at risk; again Usdaw will be consulted on the business case for the company’s proposal and we will be seeking to get the best deal for any of our members who will be affected.”