• Three percent increase is a disgraceful 8.7 percent wage cut; initial eight-day strike action to start 16 July

Unite has confirmed that its membership at the small Portrush-based manufacturer and installer of conservatories will commence an initial eight-day strike action starting 16 July 2022.

General secretary of Unite, Sharon Graham, gave her union’s full support to the striking workers: “These workers are taking strike action to win a proper cost of living pay increase. They will have the full support of their union in that fight. The current offer is a disgrace.

“Employers across the board need to provide their workers with genuine cost of living pay increases. This goes for small businesses as much as large ones. Hampton Conservatories Ltd can well afford to share their success with their workers. They must now do so.”

Gareth Scott, who is Unite regional officer for the workforce, highlighted the inadequacy of management’s latest pay offer: “Bosses at Hampton Conservatories Ltd offered the workers a mere three per cent. Retail price inflation which is the measure that most accurately estimates what working class actually are experiencing is currently running at 11.7 per cent. A three per cent increase amounts to a 8.7 per cent real-terms pay cut which is completely unacceptable to my members.

“Management know what is needed to avoid the disruption that will result from an unnecessary strike. They must return to pay talks with a much improved offer that meets the expectations and needs of their workforce.”