Majority of jobs will go at Carron Phoenix

A kitchen sink manufacturer is to retain its UK warehousing and distribution facilities in Falkirk, but it means the loss of around 180 jobs.

Carron Phoenix, whose parent company Franke Holding AG announced in April last year its intention to close the plant, says 23 employees will remain for the logistics operation once the manufacturing part moves to Slovakia to slash costs.

Only around 15 jobs were expected to be saved for the distribution site, but following extensive discussions with Scottish Enterprise and Falkirk Council the company has committed to retain the 23 staff.

Operations director Bart Doornkamp said the support from Scottish Enterprise and the council has made it possible for Carron Phoenix to continue with the logistics operations at the current site.

A carronade, which were made at the historic Carron Works site for Lord Nelson's flagship HMS Victory

The council has also been working with its PACE partners to support the 200 staff affected by the impending closure.

The site is historically linked with leading the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century when the Carron Company started it as an iron foundry, which operated globally.

It is famed for making the cannons used by Wellington at Waterloo, the Royal Mail’s famous red telephone boxes and postboxes and the iron casings which line the Clyde tunnel. Lord Nelson’s flagship HMS Victory, was also equipped with cannons called ‘Carronades’.

Councillor Dennis Goldie, spokesperson for economic development, said: “Carron Phoenix is one of the most historic manufacturing sites in Scotland and it is very disappointing that, despite the diligence and commitment of the workforce, manufacturing will now come to an end.

A carronade, which were made at the historic Carron Works site for Lord Nelson's flagship HMS Victory

“The retention of 23 jobs is to be welcomed though and we will continue to work with the company and its retained operations in Falkirk.”

Rhona Allison, company growth support director at Scottish Enterprise, said: “We are pleased that our support will help the company retain investment by Franke Holding in Scotland and continue to provide jobs which support their international growth.

“The Carron Phoenix site is important to the local Falkirk economy and the skills and capabilities of the workforce there are highly valued.”