Tesco staff in Galashiels and Peebles face uncertain future as chain reveals plans to shut some of its in-store bakeries

Workers at Tesco’s supermarkets in Galashiels and Peebles are facing an uncertain future following the retail giant’s announcement that it is cutting more than 1,800 jobs nationwide at its in-store bakeries.

By Paul Kelly
Wednesday, 26th February 2020, 9:06 am
Tesco in Galashiels.
Tesco in Galashiels.

The chain plans to convert 58 of its bakeries so they only finish pre-baked products on site rather than baking them from scratch, but it is yet to name those affected.

That move leaves staff at its two Borders stores, at Paton Street in Galashiels and Dovecot Road in Peebles, facing an anxious wait to find out how, or if, it will impact on them.

Jason Tarry, head of Tesco in the UK, said it needed to adapt to changing demand as fewer customers buy traditional loaves and sales of bagels, wraps and flatbreads rise.

Bakeries at 257 sites will stay as they are, and a further 201 will still offer some products baked from scratch.

Mr Tarry added: “We know this will be very difficult for colleagues who are impacted on, and our priority is to support them through this process. We hope that many will choose to stay with us in alternative roles.”

The main trade union representing Tesco staff, the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers, said any potential job cuts would be “devastating and upsetting”.

Pauline Foulkes, its national officer, said: “While we will do everything possible to maintain jobs or support staff to redeploy into alternative roles, opportunities to find suitable alternative skilled roles may be limited.”