1280px-Somerdale_Factory,_Keynsham,_from_lawns

The chief of the many flaws in this version is that at both ends of the Somerdale-Skarbimierz journey, the new jobs are worse than the old Somerdale ones. Even supposing all the redundant Somerdale workers, and their children, found similar low-skilled jobs, they would never be as well-paid as they were at Somerdale, and, crucially, wouldn’t have the same generous final salary pensions. Some of the Somerdale workers’ children, no doubt, will enter the higher-wage higher-skill world of the professional tech class, but the flipside of Matt Cross’s optimism is that those jobs will be few, and the zero-hours army many. The outflow of old-style manufacturing jobs, with good pay, conditions and pensions, couldn’t be matched by any foreseeable inflow. ‘People at the lower end of the workforce,’ Cross said, ‘start to lose their engagement in the workforce and the jobs they can get are very temporary jobs, minimum wage jobs, the Sports Direct-type model.’

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