Unite, the UK’s leading union, is demanding that the government steps up to the plate and ensures that Alstom’s train building factory in Derby has sufficient work to guarantee its future.

Job fears

Alstom has secured the contract to build the new trains for the HS2 line but due to delays in the project the contract will not begin until 2026, while its current order book dries up at the end of the year.

Alstom has been in talks with the Department for Transport asking for several refurbishment contracts for existing UK trains to be brought forward, allowing Alstom to bid for them and potentially bridge the gap in its order books. However, the government has refused to agree to this strategy.

Government Failure

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “The government needs to get its head out of the sand and bring forward these contracts to improve existing rolling stock immediately.”

“It is frankly unbelievable that they have not already agreed to this, in order to safeguard thousands of highly skilled jobs held by Unite members at Alstom.”

“They now need to do the right thing and I can assure you that Unite will be making sure that they are held to account for their actions.”

The Alstom factory in Derby is unique as it the UK’s only end to end (design, build, test) train factory, making it essential to the UK train industry. There are around 2,000 workers at the site and approximately 5,000 workers in Alstom’s supply chain.

Unite commitment

Unite regional secretary Paresh Patel said: “Unite will do everything that is required to secure the future of the Alstom workforce. The government’s failure to properly plan its procurement process cannot and will not be allowed to threaten the livelihoods of our members. If this Government, who claims to be on the side of working people, allows this to happen it will be a gross betrayal of this workforce and the people of Derby.”


Notes to editors

For media enquiries ONLY please contact Unite senior communications advisor Barckley Sumner on 07802 329235.

Email: [email protected]

Unite is the UK and Ireland’s leading union fighting to protect and advance jobs, pay and conditions for members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Sharon Graham.