Redundancy threat on hold as new £25m-plus contract referred to the DPEI.

More than 70 Amec employees facing redundancy were given hope of a reprieve yesterday, just weeks after they were told that they would lose their jobs at the Sellafield nuclear power plant in Cumbria.

Union UCATT told members that if the company wins the next stage of a major contract AMEC may be able to halt the redundancy process, which began as the first phase of the contract to build a massive nuclear waste store neared an end.

The news has boosted moral at the plant, where workers must now wait while the contract, worth more than £25m, is referred to the Department for Productivity, Energy and Industry (formerly the DTI).

A BNFL spokesman said: “We are hoping by the end of the month that we will have approval to award the contract.”