Community's heartbreak as Npower announces thousands of job losses

Family, friends and colleagues have reacted to the news that thousands of people face losing their jobs with Npower in the face of a full restructure for its UK business.

Friday, 29th November 2019, 1:12 pm
Updated Monday, 2nd December 2019, 9:28 am
The news about Npower broken on Friday, November 29. Picture: PA.

It was announced on Friday, November 29 that an estimated 4,500 jobs would be lost at the firm, with call centres also expected to close, as a result of an “unsustainable business situation” – which Npower says has persisted for many years.

Around 2,000 people are employed at the Rainton Bridge call centre, near to Sunderland.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Echo readers have rallied around Npower staff as news of the restructure broke. Picture: PA.

David Prentis, general secretary of the trade union, has warned that further casualties could follow in the energy market if it is not brought back in to public ownership.

He added: “This is a cruel blow for Npower employees. They’ve been worried about their jobs for months. Now their worst fears have been realised, less than a month before Christmas.”

Here’s how you reacted on the Sunderland Echo Facebook page:

Jane A Lawson: “Very sad news for the hard-working staff.”

Caroline McAllister: “Heartbreaking at this time of year.”

Joanne Preston: “Is anywhere safe anymore?!”

Sharon Bradshaw: “Awful news for staff right on Christmas, wishing you all good luck on finding new jobs.”

David Las: “Vital industries in UK have to have some or all government ownership.”

Lisa Stephenson: “Absolutely heartbreaking for the staff and families I feel so sorry for them! But this many job losses will have a huge impact upon our area i.e. ALL businesses will suffer as people will prioritise what they can afford to spend and where! Shame on you Npower!”

Kevin Patrick: “Merry Christmas Npower.”

Paul Davison: “Just as well there's the Nissan car plant to provide guaranteed employment.”

Phill Tee: “Awful news, once Brexit is ‘done’ this will be a routine part of North East news.”

David Render: “Should never have been privatised as it's a vital utility.”

Dave Ford: “If they pull out of Sunderland then I'll change my supplier in support of the staff.”