A water company covering Oxfordshire has announced plans to cut more than 100 jobs, according to a union, which could rise to 300 losses in total. 

Thames Water reportedly told the GMB trade union at a meeting on Thursday that it is to start consulting on up to 140 redundancies.

The plans involve the loss of retail and digital jobs, said the union.

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GMB national officer Gary Carter said: “In the 40 years since privatisation we’ve seen virtually no investment, systematic asset stripping and billions of public money drained from the system to fill already bulging shareholder and fat cat coffers.

“As a result, Thames is on its knees and water workers are losing their livelihoods.

“GMB will fight to minimise any compulsory redundancies and make sure our members get every penny they are due.”

A Thames Water spokeswoman said: “Delivering our refocused turnaround plan will strengthen the operational and financial resilience of Thames Water, so that we can continue to meet our customers’ needs, and create a platform from which to accelerate progress, underpinning our business plan for 2025-2030 and beyond.

“However, we know we can’t do everything.

“The last year has been an extremely challenging year for the business and we continue to take a rigorous approach to financial discipline throughout the company in order to operate within budget.

“We need to make more difficult but necessary decisions to ensure we continue to deliver to our budgets.

“That’s why today we’ve announced a range of measures to reduce our costs further and become more efficient.

“This means we are consulting on a proposal which could lead to the potential loss of around 300 roles.

“We will seek to minimise compulsory redundancies wherever possible, through redeployment and voluntary redundancy.

“Frontline colleagues will not be impacted by these proposed changes, with roles at risk primarily in our retail and digital functions as well as some other areas.

Bicester Advertiser: Thames Water workers Thames Water workers “Change does mean difficult decisions and we are focused on supporting our colleagues throughout the process.”

The water company was rated two stars in the Environment Agency’s annual performance report, which said Thames Water “requires significant improvement in a number of areas.”

The rating came after it was found the company’s total number of pollution incidents increased from 271 in 2021 to 331 in 2022.

The report assesses water companies, resulting in a rating out of four stars.

At the time, Oxford City and Green Party councillor Chris Jarvis said the rating should be a “shocking badge of shame,” and was “the latest evidence that Thames Water is a walking disaster.”

The Environment Agency’s report found that Thames Water was responsible for 50 per cent of the most serious incidents across the whole water company sector.


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This story was written by Matthew Norman, he joined the team in 2022 as a Facebook community reporter.

Matthew covers Bicester and focuses on finding stories from diverse communities.

Get in touch with him by emailing: Matthew.norman@newsquest.co.uk

Follow him on Twitter: @OxMailMattN1