Union calls for 'sense' over award row

A UNION is calling on bosses at a leading Suffolk manufacturing company to reconsider after refusing to hand over a commemorative award to one of its longest-serving employees.

Russell Claydon

A UNION is calling on bosses at a leading Suffolk manufacturing company to reconsider after refusing to hand over a commemorative award to one of its longest-serving employees.

GMB representatives will take up the Ipswich man's fight to be presented with the same cut glass goblet that all of his colleagues received, nearly a year after bosses refused him the award because of his protest about cold temperatures at the factory.

A representative of the union set to meet with management at Ransomes Jacobsen, based in Ipswich, tomorrow has called for a more “grown-up” approach from the lawnmower manufacturer over the refusal.


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The employee, who lives in Rushmere St Andrew, has worked for the company for 35 years, and has said he feels aggrieved about the long-running dispute, but does not wish to be named at this stage.

He was refused a glass goblet and £20 voucher given out to all employees of the company at their 175- year lawnmower anniversary celebrations in October 2007 after he made a stand about the heating in his factory by standing outside the marquee as the presentations were made.

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He was later told he would not be receiving his award due to his behaviour.

Mick Ainsley, the GMB organiser who will be meeting company bosses, said: “He had been complaining of working in a cold factory for quite some time and his view was nothing was done.

“He is due to retire in a very short time and this seems very petty.

“I will be meeting with management and HR and the reason for my involvement is they have exhausted all other internal procedures to get a resolution to this. He came to the union to see if we could broker some sense.

“At all stages of the grievance procedure the Ransomes management have refused to budge. Not even when we tried to compromise.

“It is such a shame that any employee who has given 35 years service can be treated in this manner simply because he made a quiet protest at the company's failure to address his complaint about heating in his workplace.”

He added: “I am hoping that Ransomes will take a grown-up view of this situation, shake hands and hand over the award to their excellent employee rather than maintain the unattractive position of the sulks.”

Peter Driver, the HR manager at Ransomes Jacobsen said: “We have not got any comment to make while a grievance procedure is still running through.”

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