24th March 2017

Eighteen jobs to go as Irvine’s plans downsize

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Almost 20 staff from Irvine Contractors are losing their jobs following moves by the construction firm to “scale back” its business and reduce its workload.

Managing director Leslie Irvine says his business has made 18 of its workers redundant as part of a restructuring programme.

Mr Leslie said in a statement that all affected staff have been informed of the decision.

He added the business would now work with a “small team” which would focus more on smaller-scale projects.

“It’s never the perfect time to make the decision to scale back but I feel that it is still a buoyant sector.

“There are enough Shetland-based entrepreneurial building businesses around at the moment who should be able to provide employment for these 18 skilled folk and I hope the impact will be minimal.

“I would like to wish the guys all the best with their new ventures.”

The company confirmed that all its existing jobs and commitments are being “completed to plan”.

In 2012 Mr Irvine’s business portfolio saw a change in emphasis, following a take-over of Lerwick Building Centre by Jewson.

At that time the business, which was set up in 1982, had a core staff of 30 workers.

“It’s been 35 great years and I’ve enjoyed seeing our joinery business develop into one of Shetland’s leading construction companies,” Mr Irvine added.

“We’ve had some super opportunities, such as the Islesburgh complexes, the Lerwick Fire Station, TSB Bank, health centres, care homes and council house refurbishment schemes.”

Mr Leslie also highlighted more recent design and build projects, including the new apartment block in Commercial Road, as well as the new Irvine Interiors shop.

“It’s been a fantastic challenge. However, for the future, we will be working with a small team concentrating on smaller scale projects.”

About Ryan Taylor

Ryan Taylor has worked as a reporter since 1995, and has been at The Shetland Times since 2007, covering a wide variety of news topics. Before then he reported for other newspapers in the Highlands, where he was raised, and in Fife, where he began his career with DC Thomson. He also has experience in broadcast journalism with Grampian Television. He has lived in Shetland since 2002, where he harbours an unhealthy interest in old cars and motorbikes.

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