WORKERS who lose their job at the Argos distribution centre set to close should be offered the chance to work at the Hinkley C construction project, a councillor says.

Last week, a decision to close the Argos site at Huntworth was revealed, putting 230 jobs at risk, according to the Unite union.

Sainsbury's says the move comes after the merging of the brands, and that workers would be supported as much as possible.

Now, Bill Revans, a Somerset County Councillor - as well as being a member of North Petherton Town Council and Sedgemoor District Council - has suggested workers could be re-trained for roles at the Hinkley site, among the largest construction projects in Europe.

“My heart goes out to the many local people that work at Argos,” Cllr Revans said.

“It is a significant local employer and there has been uncertainty since the Sainsbury’s takeover.

“I would hope that a logistics employer will express an interest in this well-located site and it can be used for alternative employment very soon."

Energy giant EDF announced in February that it plans to expand the workforce on the coastal site to 8,500 - a rise of 2,900 - as coronavirus restrictions eased.

READ MORE: Hundreds of jobs at risk as Argos announces Bridgwater depot closure
READ MORE: EDF to increase workforce at Hinkley by almost 3,000

And Cllr Revans urged councils to get involved.

“EDF has announced that it will be increasing the numbers of workers on site by 2,900 at Hinkley next year. 550 people will be impacted by the closure of the Argos Distribution Centre at Huntworth,” he added.

Somerset County Gazette:
IDEA: Cllr Bill Revans

“Instead of bringing new workers into the area our local councils need to negotiate with EDF to increase its numbers of local resident workers to ensure that the impact on the families of those effected by this closure are kept to a minimum.

“There needs to be a skills and training plan to make sure that we can meet the demand for new workers locally.

"Bringing in workers from other parts of the country while local people are unemployed makes no sense.

“This will require a proactive approach from our local councils and education and training providers.”