Honda to Shut Down UK Swindon Plant until June!

Matters are going from worse to bad for the workers at Honda's Swindon plant as, in addition to halting production in February and March, the Japanese automaker has extended the temporary shutdown of its U.K. factory for the months of April and May. "The global financial situation has continued to affect consumer confidence in the car market," Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) said in a statement on Friday. The announcement from Honda was met with dismay by Unite, the UK's largest union.

"This latest, additional shutdown underlines the urgent need for state assistance for our car industry," said Derek Simpson, joint general secretary for Unite. "With demand for Honda's products collapsed and a plunge in this year's production figures, one of our leading plants must stand idle for four months."

"Now, the Honda workforce is facing a 50 percent cut in wages, and are frightened for their jobs and futures. They, along with the rest of the car and components industry, desperately need to see some form of lifeline being thrown to the sector from the Government. We also need immediate financial support for workers, such as those at Honda, who must take a cut in pay in order to keep their jobs," added Simpson.