THIRTY-TWO jobs are setto go at Lisnaskea quarrying and construction firm P Clarke & Sons.
The company appointed administrators on Friday and has officially been bought out by Magherafelt firm FP McCann.
In last week’s paper concerns were raised by trade union Unite that “more than 20 jobs” would be lost at the Lisnaskea company after staff received notices of redundancy.
This week unfortunately those fears have been realised, with 32 of the 90 staff set to lose their jobs.
Directors at Clarke’s have blamed ‘increased pressure on the available working capital due to the adverse Euro exchange rate, the ongoing reduction in Road Service/Government work and several unprofitable contracts’ for going into administration.
Immediately following their appointment on Friday , the joint administrators Michael Jennings and Brian Murphy of BDO Northern Ireland and Danny Dartnaill of BDO LLP confirmed the sale of the company to FP McCann Ltd, following a formal sales and marketing process, which has been undertaken in recent weeks.
The sale has secured 58 jobs at the firm and the business will continue to trade new ownership and with the continued support of the existing senior management team.
Joint administrator Michael Jennings said, “We are pleased that the business will continue to trade and that 58 jobs have been safeguarded as a result of the sale.”
Unite Regional officer with responsibility for the workforce, Gareth Scott said they had been left shocked at the scale of the impact on workers which is greater than was initially feared.
“Unite is deeply concerned that Clarke’s management failed to consult the union on these redundancies and the transfer of the business to F P McCann. Unite is the recognised trade union in Clarkes and as such the company is required to consult us on such matters.
“However our main concern at this time is our members’ jobs and the future of the Clarke’s site, we are aware that the company has been sold to FP McCann, a Magherafelt-based construction company and we have contacted them with a view to seeking an urgent meeting in regard to this announcement and the future job security of the workforce.”
Fermanagh and South Tyrone MP Tom Elliott expressed his “deep regret” at the loss of the 32 jobs at the Lisnaskea firm.
“This is a third-generation firm which was established in the 1930’s as a contracting and quarrying business and I have worked closely with the firm over recent years during the construction sector downturn.
“The loss of more than 30 jobs in the Lisnaskea area will have a major impact on the local economy.”
He added, “The Clarke firm have significantly developed over recent decades from a construction company carrying out work mainly in
Fermanagh and the surrounding area, to providing major structural schemes throughout Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.”