PILKINGTON is to shut one of its St Helens operations because of the downturn in the motor industry, with 11 workers facing redundancy.

The St Helens Automotive Value Added operation based at Watson Street is to close amid the recession.

A spokesperson for Pilkington said: “The current economic downturn and its direct effect on the automotive industry has impacted so severely on volumes that there are very high levels of overcapacity across the group.

“The St Helens Automotive Value Added site has been operating on a short time working basis in recent months.

“However, the unprecedented drop in demand and the reduction of future orders means there is insufficient work to keep the operation loaded going forward.

“There are 11 employees affected at the site. Discussions have commenced with employees and their representatives to look at all possible steps to mitigate the effect of these redundancies.

"Full support will be provided to assist employees in their search for alternative employment opportunities.”