The union representing workers affected by Tesco’s plans to reshuffle its distribution network in the UK said the news is “devastating” for its members.

The retail giant yesterday (25 February) revealed plans to reorganised its distribution network, putting up to 2,000 jobs at risk.

The group is closing distribution centres in Harlow, Weybridge and Chesterfield, which employ 800, 650 and 400 staff respectively. Tesco said it will attempt to relocate workers to two new super hubs opening in Reading and Dagenham, which are expected to create 1,900 jobs.

Usdaw, the union, said it will now meet with Tesco following the proposals.

“This is devastating news for our members and we will be examining very closely the business case for these proposed changes,” said National officer Joanne McGuinness.

“We will be using the 90-day consultation period to consult with the company on behalf of our members who are now facing an uncertain future. While the company’s review of its distribution network has been going on for some time now, the proposed closures of the Chesterfield, Harlow and Weybridge sites has still come as a great shock to our members.”

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She added: “While we understand the retail sector never stands still, the human cost in these upheavals has impacted massively on the UK’s warehouse and distribution workforce.”