AN ANDOVER-based employer is expecting to slash up to 75 jobs after “a period of unprecedented change” brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.

Stannah, the stairlift manufacturer based in East Portway industrial estate, has confirmed that cuts across the business will be made in response to “the impact of Covid-19” and the uncertainty around the future.

Following a review of the impact of the pandemic, the company concluded that “there is a need to a need to refocus efforts and seek out areas to operate more efficiently”.

Bosses say Stannah will therefore be reducing its headcount by around 75, which equates to 5 per cent of its UK workforce.

Jon Stannah, Stannah Group Managing Director, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic will go down as one of the most disruptive events in history, not only in the personal cost to so many lives, but the wider cost to the economy and all that brings with it.”

“We are very disappointed to be making this difficult announcement, particularly after our record year in 2019. We have a highly skilled and loyal workforce that we value immensely and the factors that have led to this are not of our making.”

“If we want to survive through this current crisis and protect the business for the long term, it has become clear to us that we have to make some incredibly tough decisions about putting the business in the best shape to navigate the crisis that we find ourselves in.”

“The last few months have been a period of unprecedented change and uncertainty for all of us and I am sincerely grateful for the resilience and support our staff have shown throughout. We are committed to doing what we can to support those affected including enhancing any redundancy payments and providing outplacement support.”

Stannah has been a fixture in Andover for almost 50 years, and in February of this year the company lodged plans to build a new factory in Andover Business Park.

These plans, however, have been put on hold following the outbreak of the pandemic.