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Calls to extend consultation period for threatened Heinz factory

PUBLISHED: 17:18 11 October 2014 | UPDATED: 17:19 11 October 2014

Denise Burke with Stalham resident Richard Peason who worked at the factory until he retired.

Denise Burke with Stalham resident Richard Peason who worked at the factory until he retired.

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Campaigners are calling for an extension to the 45-day consultation period for the Heinz factory which is threatened with closure.

Those involved with the Jobs Means Heinz petition are calling on the company to extend the Westwick closure 45-day consultation period as their petition gathers momentum and reaches 600 signatures.

The North Norfolk Labour Party were out in North Walsham and Stalham over the weekend collecting more names in support of workers at the factory.

They have spoken to more friends and family of the workers and former colleagues, including Richard Pearson, 90, from Stalham who worked in the factory until he retired 20 years ago, and who they said was enthusiastic about the campaign.

Denise Burke, Labour’s parliamentary candidate for North Norfolk, said: “This announcement had come out of the blue for many workers at the factory so I am joining with Usdaw and Unite to press for an extension of the 45-day consultation period so no decision is reached so close to Christmas.

“Over the weekend we have hit our first target of 600 names while petitioning in North Walsham and Stalham, and I hope this will continue to rise over the coming weeks as we announce further events.

“We have met so many people with stories to tell about the factory - all passionate about saving the factory and it’s been a real driving force for the campaign.”

The petition can be viewed at www.jobsmeansheinz.co.uk.

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