Currently reading: PSA switches Ellesmere Port plant to four-day week
Troubled Vauxhall factory will move to a four-day week this month in response to reduced Astra estate sales

The PSA Group will reduce the Vauxhall plant in Ellesmere Port, north-west England, to a four-day working week from 23 March.

A letter sent to employees and then seen by the Liverpool Echo newspaper revealed the plans. Vauxhall has since acknowledged them in a statement but claims employees would work "extended hours" on those four days to match the current five-day week. 

The statement doesn't rule out job cuts or restructuring in the near future, with Vauxhall saying it will "study the result of this decision and discuss with workforce representatives and trade unions whether there are any impacts".

PSA Ellesmere Port factory investment will hang on EU trade deal 

A statement from Ellesmere Port plant director Mark Noble said the decision was taken due to a fall in demand for the Astra Sports Tourer estate, which is built in both Vauxhall and Opel forms at the plant. Both brands sold less than 137,000 Astras last year, not far off half the volumes achieved in 2016.

Ellesmere Port has seen its workforce dramatically reduce since PSA took over the twin brands from General Motors. It's feared that more jobs could be eliminated as a result of the reduced working week. 

Noble claimed the decision "will not influence negatively whether Ellesmere Port is allocated to the new Astra". However, workers still fear that it won't wont be retained as the model's second production base, alongside Rüsselheim in Germany, when the next-generation model is introduced in 2021. 

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Kamelo 11 March 2020



Well, we've been saving up hard over the last 5 years and finally got a hearty £26K in the bank to buy a new car.  Tough at times, but we've managed it.  So, which car do you fancy with you're £26k?

Ah, we're going for an Astra estate.  Nice colour, too.


REALISATION: Be thankful you've got enough orders to operate the Astra estate factory at 4 days.

ianp55 10 March 2020

Opel Astra

Is it history repeating itself,will Vauxhall & Ellesmere Port go the same way as Talbot and Ryton? I was under the impression that the second Astra production line is in Gilwice in Poland,has production there been reduced as well

Pietro Cavolonero 11 March 2020

I think it will ultimately close..

PSA have history in that department, it's a damn sight easier and cheaper to shut a UK factory than a French or German one. I think the Vauxhall brand will stay (for now) but PSA/FCA have an awful lot of dead wood to chop in the future.  Look at it like Morris and Talbot, gradually reduced to commercial vehicel nameplates before the axe fell, I can see that happening to Vauxhall and maybe Opel, Lancia will be next to go. Dodge will be fully rebranded as RAM and Maserati floated off, possibly with Alfa thrown in.

Pietro Cavolonero 10 March 2020

Ellesmere Port switching to a 4 day week... other news a bear was reportedly sh!tting in woods today. For as long as I can remember car plants have shifted in and out of shutdowns, 4 day weeks, 3 dayweeks, three shifts, no shifts. The UK market is still an important one to the EU and its businesses, I don't think any major decision will be made by PSA until the tariff matters are sorted.  It will cost them dearly by only supplying EU manufactured vehicles.