Six more jobs go but it’s ‘business as usual’ at Red Lion Quarter

Red Lion Quarter, Spalding
Red Lion Quarter, Spalding

BOSSES have cut more jobs at Spalding’s Red Lion Quarter as the bid to cut costs at the troubled centre continues.

Six of the 15 staff will be made redundant. The job cuts follow the departure of manager Richard Baggaley and one other member of staff who have already left the £6.5million centre.

The food court opening hours will be cut from 8am-6pm to 9am-5pm.

However, both South Holland District Council and the company now running the Red Lion Quarter said it’s still “business as usual” for customers.

Norfolk and Waveney Enterprise Services (NWES) was bought in by the council to run the venue in a bid to stop it losing money and rent out empty shop and office units.

NWES head of support Gary Hewitt said: “We have had to take the regrettable decision of making a number of redundancies to preserve the overall future of the Red Lion Quarter and Food Court.

“By taking this early action we are safeguarding a number of existing jobs within the centre. We would like to reiterate that the staff who remain in place are fully versed with the building and it is very much business as usual.”

The council teamed up with funding partners to build the centre, which is run by a separate Community Interest Company (CIC).

The council’s cabinet discussed the matter in closed session on Tuesday night and yesterday the authority issued the following statement: “At the cabinet meeting on Tuesday there were recommendations which were commercially sensitive that were approved. This means that it’s business as usual at the Red Lion Quarter.

“The CIC will be dissolved at a suitable point in time and the management company NWES will be running the centre until it’s ready to go to market for a new operator.”

A shopper, who asked not to be named, said: “I went in there at lunchtime and the staff were all in tears because they had just learned half were going to be made redundant.

“It’s not very nice – they are young girls and it’s not their fault.”