Engineering jobs under threat at Monarch

MONARCH could close its maintenance hangar at Manchester airport with the loss of more than 120 engineering jobs.

The maintenance hangar in Manchester provides the large-scale services for the Monarch fleet – if the hangar does close, this work would be transferred to Birmingham and Luton.

A maintenance line for quick turn-around services for aircraft will be maintained at Manchester.

Along with the 123 Manchester jobs, 13 engineering jobs at Luton and several at Birmingham could also be axed.

Monarch is in consultation with its Manchester based employees and union Unite but said that ultimately a decision may be taken to close the engineering facility.

Andy Mackay, Monarch’s interim managing director, said: “We are fully committed to retaining talent, skills and expertise within our business.

“In the event that redundancies become necessary, we will offer alternative roles to all those affected, with relocation to our other facilities.”

The news was branded ‘a severe blow’ by Unite, which has more than 1,000 members working for Monarch in engineering and cabin crew roles.

Unite regional officer, Paul Bouch said: “The company blames a lack of work for these job losses – and not the level of summer bookings. Unite will be giving maximum support to our engineering members affected at Monarch in the days and weeks to come.

“We have our first meeting with management tomorrow (Thursday 21 April) where we will be pressing very hard to avoid compulsory redundancies and also for redeployment, wherever possible.”

Ken O’Toole, chief executive for Manchester Airport, said: “We note Monarch Aircraft Engineering’s intention to review its engineering operations at Manchester Airport and appreciate this will be an unsettling time for its employees who are involved in the formal consultation. 

“The hangar occupied by Monarch is a high quality facility, with airport sites of this nature being in considerable demand from a wide range of occupiers.”

In October 2014 Greybull Capital took control of Monarch from the Mantegazza family.