Britain and Ireland’s largest union, Unite described Honda’s decision to press ahead with the closure of its Swindon plant by 2021 as a ‘body blow of betrayal.’

Today’s (Monday 13 May) news comes after the carmaker said it had rejected an alternative plan for the Swindon plant which would have kept it open.

The closure of Honda Swindon threatens the livelihoods of over 15,000 direct Honda employees and workers in the supply chain.

Unite national officer Des Quinn said: “We await the detailed reasons from Honda, but Unite believes that our alternative case to keep Honda Swindon open added up and was likely to be backed by the government with public money.

“It would have made Honda a global leader in emerging battery technology and in a strong position to exploit the growing global market for electric vehicles in the coming years.

“Instead we have this body blow which is nothing short of a betrayal of the workforce, customers and the wider supply chain which relies on Honda Swindon for work.

“Unite can only conclude that Honda is taking a strategic decision to retreat out of Europe in favour of protecting its North American operations and avoiding president Trump’s tariff threat on cars made in Europe.

“Unite will be consulting with its members on our next steps in the coming days.”


For more information please contact Alex Flynn Unite head of media and campaigns on 020 3371 2066 or 07967 665869

  • Notes to editors

    Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest union with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.