Staff 'devastated' by Ottery business closure
OTTERY workers have been left devastated after hearing they will be made redundant just two days before Christmas.
OTTERY workers have been left "devastated" after hearing they will be made redundant just two days before Christmas.
The Ottery branch of Finnimore Industrial Estate agricultural equipment merchant MST, formerly known as PJ Flegg, has fallen victim to the recession and will close on December 23- after nearly a quarter of a century of trading in the town.
Unlucky staff were given the news on Friday the 13th.
While some workers based at the business have been offered jobs at another branch, one stunned employee told the Herald around 10 of his colleagues now face an uncertain future.
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The staff member, who did not want to be named, said: "We are all devastated. We were told the company has lost money and they felt Ottery was where they could cut some costs.
"It's not the time of year you want to be unemployed. The company has been in the town for a long time, around 24 years, it's really sad.
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"I didn't think this would happen that quickly, we all thought that it (the business) was fairly safe."
Once owned by a local businessman, PJ Flegg came under the ownership of MST around four and a half years ago.
MST managing director Paul Watson confirmed the closure close. He said some Ottery staff will be transferred to the business' distribution centre in Tiverton, adding three to four redundancies were expected, but negotiations are still ongoing.
"In the current economic climate we had to make savings across the group," he said.
Staff members have been given notice, and some will continue to be paid after the branch's closure on December 23.