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Firm steps in with jobs for redundant workers

PUBLISHED: 10:09 22 March 2010 | UPDATED: 09:28 01 August 2010

UP to 25 staff at an independent print finishing business in Beccles faced redundancy after bosses announced it was folding.

But now one of the town's biggest employers has stepped in with the offer of work to six of those who faced losing their jobs.

UP to 25 staff at an independent print finishing business in Beccles faced redundancy after bosses announced it was folding.

But now one of the town's biggest employers has stepped in with the offer of work to six of those who faced losing their jobs.

Directors of Riverside Print Finishing, in Common Lane North, announced to employees last week that the business was to close.

It has been trading in Beccles for more than 15 years, specialising in all types of print finishing, including jacketing, sewing, and dispatching.

Brothers Charlie and Freddie Longe, who have been managing directors for the past 10 years, said the company had lost some of its firm client base due to the recession.

Charlie Longe said: “This is no reflection on the extremely hard work of our dedicated staff. Business has been difficult for the past two years and we are desperately sad it's come to this. Our staff have become our friends and its extremely upsetting.

“The turnover has dropped quite badly. We took a lot of precautionary steps and tried everything we could. We just can't be confident of getting enough business over the next six months to get through it.

He added: “During the recession the book world has been particularly hit.”

Among the clients if provided print finishing and dispatch services to were printing companies were Cambridge University Press and its Beccles neighbour William Clowes, which has now offered jobs to some of the staff.

CPI William Clowes, which employs 130 people at its base at Ellough, is one of the UK's largest manufacturers of directories and reference books.

Managing director Ian Foyster said one of the Riverside's largest customers approached Clowes to ask if it could take on the distribution side of the business. He said it was good news for the six people who had been offered jobs in the same field of work, and who would be able to continue working together.

“We are independently developing our own distribution centre within our factory in Copland Way,” he said. “Clearly this was quite a good opportunity for us. We needed the experience of some of the staff from Riverside and some of them have joined us to help.”

Mr Foyster added that business continued to be strong and that it was currently employing more than 30 extra temporary members of staff.

William Clowes specialises in producing complex products, and its customers range from self publishing authors to the largest publishing houses.

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