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Port Talbot shoppers' dismay at Tata Steel job losses

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: November 24, 2012

  • Nathan Thomas

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SHOPPERS in Port Talbot town centre reacted with dismay over the Tata job losses.

As news of the announcement spread and people began to come to terms with another hammer blow to the local economy, residents both young and old were unanimous in their dismay over the move and in their concerns for the future.

"It is going to be a blow to the area, there is not much work around here," said one shopper, Russell Arnold, 51, from Taibach.

"My father worked there for 30 years, it is going to be devastating for the town."

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Another shopper, 23-year-old Nathan Thomas from Velindre, added: "My old man has worked there for 15 years and I think he is safe.

"It is shocking. A couple of my friends have only been there a year, and it is not fair on them.

"Only Amazon seem to be taking on at the moment."

Businesses in the town also expressed their worry.

Mike Gardener, manager of the Gateway Bookshop, said: "I live in Neath but have friends who work there and have done for years.

"It is very worrying and concerning, especially with the town as it is — people just don't spend as much money as they used to.

"I would be concerned about the bigger picture, what is the underlying trend going to be for the steelworks?"

Hairdresser Lloyd Morgan added: "I know and speak to quite a few people who work there, I can understand it would be a very worrying time for them.

"It is a terrible thing to happen to the town."

Pensioner Evan Thomas, 74, summed up the position many workers found themselves in.

"Years ago there was all sorts of industry, now there is nothing here for people," he said.

"No job is safe now."

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