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Philips Avent factory site in Glemsford placed up for sale ahead of closure in early 2020

One of south Suffolk’s largest industrial sites has gone up for sale, ahead of its closure early next year.

Estate agents Savills has begun marketing the Philips Avent baby product manufacturing plant in Lower Road, Glemsford, which is set to cease production in early 2020, affecting more than 400 jobs.

Philips announced at the start of 2019 that it would be shutting down the factory and consolidating its manufacturing operations at another site in the Netherlands, following a review of the firm’s industrial footprint across Europe.

GLEMSFORD:Philips Avent, Lower Road, Glemsford, Suffolk Picture Mark Westley. (23365301)
GLEMSFORD:Philips Avent, Lower Road, Glemsford, Suffolk Picture Mark Westley. (23365301)

The company had previously issued warnings about the future of the site, which focuses on exporting one category of products outside of the UK, due to the lack of certainty around the future traditional relationship with the European Union post-Brexit.

It has since pledged to ensure a smooth transition for its employees, stating that staff facing redundancies have ample opportunities for alternative employment in the local industrial sector.

At a meeting of the South Suffolk Taskforce earlier this year, Philips officials, local politicians and business representatives agreed that the best outcome for the site would be to remain in industrial use.

Neil Mesher, chief executive of Philips UK, added: “It is disappointing that we will not continue to have a long-term future in Glemsford.

“However, we are now focused on two vital outcomes – supporting our affected employees in the most constructive way possible, and finding a buyer for the site, so the plant can continue to deliver economic and employment value to the area.”