UK: Gemini Rail has confirmed that it is to close its Springburn rolling stock maintenance works in Glasgow, citing ‘severely adverse market conditions affecting its core business’ and losses of £1m per month throughout 2018. The site has work in place until July, but closure is planned by March 2020 with the loss of around 120 jobs.
Gemini said it had met with stakeholders to discuss ideas for the future of the former British Rail workshops, which Knorr-Bremse divested last year, but the board did not consider that there was any viable option to sustain operations.
The ‘difficult decision’ was blamed on wider changes in the market. The number of pre-privatisation vehicles which form the site’s core workload is expected to fall by 80% by 2024, with only 10% of the ‘accessible’ rolling stock operating in Scotland or northern England.
Responding to the news, RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said the closure was ‘a disgraceful betrayal of the rail industry in Scotland’, and called for passenger operator ScotRail and its engineering and fleet support to be ‘taken into public ownership’.