Staffordshire Pottery Giant, the World of Wedgwood, plan to build a new marina at a heavy cost of £34 million pounds.
This recent proposal has caused a major backlash in the local community after the company announced that they would cut 103 jobs from the Barlaston based factory.
Wedgwood originally announced that they would be cutting 143 jobs, however, after deliberations, it was lowered to 103.
The Pottery firm also announced that they would be shipping manufacturing overseas and that the company had been granted £5 million pounds of taxpayer cash to keep jobs in the Potteries.
GMB, the union for Wedgwood, slammed the company for taking manufacturing overseas and not protecting all the jobs.
GMB’s Senior Organiser, Amanda Gearing, said: “Obviously we’re happy that less of our members are about to have their jobs taken away from them.”
But this is not enough for the union who slammed Wedgwood for using taxpayer cash.
Gearing added: “It’s a scandal of epic proportions – this money should be immediately returned to the public purse.
“Why should the taxpayer pay for a Finnish company to take British jobs overseas?”
On top of the devastating job cuts, Wedgwood released an anniversary £2 coin, which GMB scrutinised, branding the coin as a “sick joke.”
Despite this, the pricey marina is set to stand between the Trent and Mersey Canal and the railway line on the site of an unused car park, on the Wedgwood estate.
The plan’s include space for 141 canal boats, office facilities and kitchens. A new car park will additionally be fitted. The proposals for this marina were submitted in March 2015, accepted by Staffordshire Borough Council.
Wedgwood has celebrated their 260th anniversary this year and the marina plans are a fraction of their forever evolving legacy.
Although these plans attempt to give Wedgwood a sparkling future, it has caused concern for canal users.
The Trent and Mersey Canal Society has welcomed the marina, an exciting centre for those on the waters.
“The proposed new marina is possibly one of the latest significant developments of its type,” said David Dumbelton, a local representative of the Society.
But notwithstanding this, there’s concern that the site planned for the marina, is too small for the amount of canal boats its intending to hold, which will possibly bottleneck the canals.
He said: “Our main concern is that the number of boats proposed to be using the moorings is likely to cause, at peak times, queuing at the nearby Trentham Lock and northwards to the Stoke flights of locks, with serious congestion at the Meaford group of locks, to the south and continuing on to the many locks at Stone.”
However, the Trent and Mersey Canal Society wishes the developers well.
Though the plans for the marina were submitted four years ago, there has been no indication as to when construction will begin.