Fresh attempts are to be made today to end the industrial dispute over the sacking of 670 workers at catering company Gate Gourmet.
The Heathrow-based company, which supplies British Airways, and the Transport & General Workers’ Union (T&G) failed to reach agreement on Tuesday.
Gate Gourmet warned that it was likely to collapse unless it could secure a new contract with BA. The airline has agreed to sign a new deal if the labour dispute is resolved.
Talks between the T&G union and Gate Gourmet initially broke up on Tuesday evening.
T&G chief negotiator Brendan Gold accused the firm of walking out of the talks, but the company denied that, and said it was “cautiously optimistic” of reaching an agreement today.
It said potential moves to place the company into administration would be put on hold.
Last night there was a fresh indication of the pressure Gate Gourmet is under to maintain even a reduced service. In a leaked letter seen by The Guardian newspaper, the company appears to be offering drivers £500 bonuses if they will work continually and undertake overtime “during this difficult time”.
It says that to qualify drivers must work their normal shifts for 32 days, or four rosters, but that they must also work at least one day of overtime in each roster. Those who take leave or days off sick will miss out.