By Anders Anglesey
A proposed employee buyout of one of the UK’s last remaining deep coal mines has been shelved the National Union of Miners has said.
The NUM’s planned buyout of Kellingley Colliery, near Selby, was ditched after the union accused UK Coal of making unrealistic demands.
Plans for a takeover would have seen miners invest £2,000 each to keep the colliery open until 2020, and prevent the loss of around 700 jobs, but were put on hold after meeting with UK Coal.
But UK Coal strongly denied the accusations made by the trade union’s branch officials that the company blocked buyout attempts, saying the claims were ‘dishonest’ and ‘naïve’.
Alison Reid, from UK Coal said: “We are bitterly disappointed with the false accusations and inaccuracies announced by trade union branch officials, led by the NUM, at Kellingley.
“The plan was totally unviable and concerns were raised by directors that the buy-out deal was not accurately presented to Kellingley employees as it did not include millions of pounds of liabilities that would have to be paid.
“Assumptions around the price of coal were out by tens of millions of pounds, but all such advice was ignored.
“To accuse the company of blocking this buy-out is both dishonest and naïve.”
Updates to follow…