WORKERS at the Tollcross McVitie's plant under threat of closure have hit out after factory owners, pladis, revealed plans to extend their Carlisle facility.

The move was reported in our sister title News & Star earlier today. An application was submitted to Carlisle City Council which outlined the building of an extension to the warehouse and several other improvements.

The revelation comes after staff protested outside Holyrood today to deliver a 75,000 signature strong petition, calling on the company to stop the closure. 

Glasgow Times:

The workforce has described the plans as a 'kick in the teeth.' One worker said: "Disgusting - that should not have been announced until after a final decision was taken on Tollcross - says it all really."

Another said: "Seems a strange one for McVities to announce they are to expand the Carlisle site, on a day where we are handing in a petition to save our jobs and factory.

Local representatives have also hit out at the move after pladis handed employees at the Tollcross facility HR1 forms last week to formally begin the redundancy consultation process.

Glasgow Times: Finance Secretary Kate Forbes at Holyrood wednesday on Scotland's economic recovery...Pic Gordon Terris Herald & Times..2/6/21.

An action group set up by the Scottish Government and chaired by finance secretary Kate Forbes MSP has accused the company of failing to engage with them in order to secure the factory's future.

David Linden, MP for Glasgow East slammed the company He said: "Since announcing the proposal to close Tollcross, Pladis’ sole argument has been that the company is doing so due to issues of ‘overcapacity’ in the business. 

Glasgow Times: David Linden

“This bombshell revelation that they are in fact planning to expand another site means that the arguements about overcapacity have crumbled quicker than your average McVities biscuit.

“Pladis need to quit playing games with their employees’ livelihoods, come to the table and properly engage with the action group. Anything less is a major failure of responsibility which raises serious questions for a company which claims to have a so called family business ethos.”

Glasgow Times:

Paul Sweeney MSP for Glasgow called the move 'bad faith'. He said: "The news that Pladis has submitted a planning application to expand its Carlisle factory, while it sends redundancy notices to its 500 workers in Glasgow simply underscores the bad faith approach of the company throughout this so-called consultation on the future of the Tollcross site.

"Having read the business case presented by the company, it is quite obvious to me that it is possible to invest to enhance productivity in the Glasgow factory, either at its current site or at a nearby location.

I therefore reiterate my call for the First Minister to personally lobby the company at the highest level armed with a compelling investment proposal that they will be unable to refuse.Nearly 200 years of the McVitie's brand in Scotland and 500 Glaswegian livelihoods hinge on us all doing everything we can to persuade the company to reconsider its position."

Pladis has been approached for comment.