Swift Caravans lays off staff
The UK's caravanning favourite Swift isn't immune from the impact of coronavirus
Monday, 11, May 2020 03:50
By Chris Littley
A number of staff at the UK's biggest manufacturer of caravans have been sent letters to say their fixed-term contracts will not be renewed when they come to an end in June.
Swift Group is cutting the amount of people it employs, as the reality of the coronavirus pandemic starts to hit, although it is not clear how many of the 1,150 employees are being retained, reports HullLive.
Like many of the UK's manufacturing businesses, Swift's operations have been forced to shut down while everybody stays at home to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Workers have been on furlough throughout April and original plans to start building caravans again from May 4th never came to fruition.
A company spokesman released a statement saying: "I can confirm that the company will not be extending any fixed-term contracts that are due to finish by the end of June.
"The number of employees this affects is a small proportion of the whole organisation. Business activity is suspended at this time and we continue to follow government guidance."
Swift has been making caravans since the 1960s, with the first model, known as The Ten, completed by partners Ken Smith and Ken Day.
It was built on Hedon Road in Hull and the company continues to run much of its operation from Yorkshire.
Over the years, Smith with his wife Joan continued to grow the business, after buying out Day, and produced iconic models, including the Clubman, Rapide and Challenger.
Swift gained a reputation for innovative design and introduced many features like its deep front windows and fixed beds to meet changes in the market.
To this day, Swift remains a popular brand of caravan, with the latest releases continuing to break the mould and gain the attention of aficionados everywhere.
Its 2020 editions include new versions of the Elegance, with luxury features, and an entirely revamped Sprite, to do justice to the legend that has won awards over the years.