Socialist Worker

Gunstones strikers win pay rises

by Nick Clark
Issue No. 2466

On the Gunstones picket line in June

On the Gunstones picket line in June (Pic: Jeannie Robinson)

Strikers at Gunstones bakery in Dronfield, Sheffield, have won their battle against an imposed pay freeze.

The members of the Bfawu union have won a 2 percent pay increase backdated from August last year and another 2 percent pay increase starting from this month.

The settlement also includes an improved overtime deal.

Gunstones bosses had tried to impose a pay freeze after laying off 426 workers. But they were forced into giving the pay rise after a successful two-day walkout in June.

The strike saw more than 60 people turn out on picket lines, turning lorries away at the gates after drivers refused to cross the line.

And they were joined by a delegation of Bfawu members from the Hovis bakery in Wigan, where strikers won a victory against zero hour contracts in 2013. 

Threats of another 48-hour strike twice forced bosses into talks, eventually leading to the deal. Workers had voted by 93 percent to reject a previous offer last month.

Bfawu union rep Dave told Socialist Worker, “The strike did it. 

“They didn’t want us to go out again. The strike disrupted them big time.

“In the end they gave up. I suppose they’ll come back for some terms and conditions when the living wage comes in in April. 

“But that’s for another day, so we’ll see what happens.”

Click here to subscribe to our daily morning email newsletter 'Breakfast in red'

Mobile users! Don't forget to add Socialist Worker to your home screen.