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Virgin Atlantic announce plans to close Crawley contact centre

Jobs are at risk as the airline merges two centres in Swansea.

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Some jobs at Virgin Atlantic could be under threat as the airline has announced plans to merge their two contact centres together.

Currently the airline operate two centres, one in Crawley and one in Swansea, but under a new restructure the Crawley site is to close as they merge the two centres together in their Swansea location.

More news: Drunk passenger jailed after tirade of abuse on Virgin flight

A spokesperson for Virgin Atlantic, said:

“We’re committed to providing our customers with the most personalised service of any UK airline, and currently have two contact centres based in Crawley and Swansea.

“The way our customers engage with us is changing, and in order to continue to offer unrivalled service to our customers we plan to bring our contact centres together at a single site in Swansea. Being located together will make it easier to roll out the digital enhancements our customers expect, and operate a large 24/7 contact centre operation.

“We are really proud of our loyal and dedicated contact centre team and are focused on supporting people impacted by this change.”

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‘It’s not nearly enough funding’ warns Crawley Council as business grant applications open

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Eligible businesses can now apply for the latest round of business grants but Crawley Borough Council says the funding is not nearly enough.

Despite Crawley being responsible for 25 per cent of the economic output in West Sussex, it has been given some of the lowest grant funding in the county.

The government has given the council £3,733,396 made up of:

  • £1,485,216 in Local Restrictions Support Grant to distribute to businesses that pay business rates and have had to close during the second lockdown
  • £2,248,180 in Additional Restrictions Grant, which is given to businesses that don’t pay business rates and have been affected by the lockdown but not legally required to close.

Out of seven local authorities in West Sussex, only one received less than Crawley’s combined grants figure. Five councils received more.

The Additional Restrictions Grant is based on £20 per person in Crawley rather than the number of businesses in the town. This means that Arun District Council, for example, has received £3,215,160 due to a larger population but smaller economy.

And only one council in West Sussex received less than Crawley across both rounds of grant funding in April and November. Crawley received a total of £17,167,646. The highest – Chichester District Council – received £43,739,396.

In the first round of grants earlier this year only 23 per cent of Crawley businesses received financial help from the government.

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of the Council, said:

“The pot of grant funding provided by the government is very limited and does not recognise the number of businesses we have in Crawley.

“The way the grant settlement is calculated – on population and not on the size of the economy – means we have to turn most businesses away, while other councils have millions to spare. This is causing major hardship at a time when Crawley is already the hardest-hit economy in the UK.”

Businesses that have had to close during the second lockdown can apply for a Local Restrictions Support Grant by visiting https://grantapproval.co.uk

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