RMT union plans blockade of Cairnryan port in protest at P&O layoffs

The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union is planning to block Cairnryan port in protest at the dismissal of hundreds of workers by P&O, the body’s Scottish organizer has said.

Gordon Martin said the union would hold a protest at the port on April 8, asking carriers not to cross the picket line.

He addressed the Alba party’s spring conference in Glasgow, saying the union would also hold a protest at the offices of Clyde Marine Recruitment on Monday – accusing them of recruiting staff to replace laid-off workers.

A number of protests have already taken place at ports across the UK amid calls for the chief executive of P&O to step down.

Mr Martin told the conference: “We are targeting the supply chain, we are targeting P&O and we are targeting everyone.

“Because it will be a fight until the end. If we lose, you all lose too.

“Everyone loses if the bandit capitalists win. ”

The RMT plans further protests (Andrew Milligan/PA)

“Ask the carriers and others not to cross our line. If you cross our line, we lose.

“If we lose, everyone loses.”

Mr. Martin also referred to the two ferries under construction at the Ferguson Marine shipyard which have been heavily delayed.

Earlier in the week, a report from Audit Scotland noted a ‘multitude of failures’ which have more than doubled the cost of ferries.

Mr Martin said: “We need new tonnage. We have a few boats at Ferguson Marine and I think I’ll be retired and long gone before they see a break somewhere.

“Because I don’t think they’ll ever be on the water, that’s my honest opinion.”

Clyde Marine Recruitment said it had no prior knowledge of Thursday’s massive sacking last week.

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