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Meeting to discuss future of Ulverston’s GSK site

GSK in Ulverston

Barrow MP Simon Fell has called a public meeting to discuss the future of the GSK site in Ulverston.

Last week, the pharmaceuticals giant announced it is to close the cephalosporin division of its business as part of a $350 million sale to another pharmaceuticals firm, Novartis’ Sandoz.

GSK confirmed that it will continue to produce the antibiotic Zinnat at the Ulverston site until 2025.

An emergency taskforce meeting was convened by Mr Fell took place on Wednesday.

Directors and senior management from GSK, union representatives and councillors from South Lakeland District Council and Ulverston Town Council attended.

Following on from the meeting, Mr Fell has called a virtual town hall meeting for members of the public on Tuesday to put any questions they have to him about the announcement.

People will receive an update from Mr Fell, along with a GSK update from Ulverston’s site director Phil Wilson.

A 45-minute question-and-answer session will follow.

Mr Fell said: “I was deeply disappointed by the news on Thursday that GSK has sold its antibiotics business in Ulverston and Barnard Castle, putting 130 local jobs at risk.

“This comes as a real blow to the community and, of course, particularly to those who work there. It is difficult at such a time to look at the bigger picture and to find any positives, but there are some.

“In the wings are Lakes BioScience who are keen to open a new contract manufacturing plant adjacent to GSK.

“Residents understandably have concerns about this announcement, which is why I’ve called this meeting and I’m delighted that Phil has agreed to attend. I hope that as many local people as possible who are affected by this news can attend.”

Anyone wishing to attend the meeting should email [email protected] or by post to 132 Cavendish Street, Barrow in Furness, LA14 1DJ by 10am on Tuesday.