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10 December 2012
Unite, Britain's biggest union, has written to the prime minister David Cameron, the London mayor Boris Johnson and key ministers to urge them to publicly back Unite's campaign to save the maker of the black cab and ensure the iconic vehicle is built in Britain.
This week the decision over the future of LTI (London Taxi International) will enter the final phases as the administrator, PWC (Price Waterhouse Coopers), which is managing the sale of the company's assets shortlists potential buyers down to single figures.The administrator could make a decision on the company's future by the end of the month.
The union has written to David Cameron, Boris Johnson, business secretary Vince Cable and transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin urging them to support Unite's campaign to save the black cab.
The union has set up a facebook campaign page www.Facebook.com/SaveOurBlackCabswith a link to a petition and is building public support for the campaign.
In the letters to senior government figures Tony Burke, Unite assistant general secretary wrote: "The Black cab is part of Britain's manufacturing heritage and part of our national fabric, like Big Ben or fish and chips but now they could disappear from our roads.
"It is unthinkable that the historic black cab could be built anywhere else but in the UK. Unite which represents the workers at London Taxi International and London black cab drivers, is campaigning to save the black cab and continue to have them built in the UK.
"Unite is asking you to commit your personal support to our campaign to ensure that the iconic black cab continues to be built in the UK."
In October, LTI (London Taxi International) went into administration putting the future of Britain's only black cab maker at risk. The administrator, PWC (Price Waterhouse Coopers), sacked 156 workers and there is now a very real risk that the company could collapse, or the black cab could end up being built abroad.
The administrators are reaching a crucial stage in shortlisting potential buyers and the union is urging stakeholders to apply as much pressure as possible to ensure that any buyer commits to building the black cabs in the UK.
Unite is urging PWC and any potential buyer to keep manufacturing in Coventry and the black cab on the road. PWC could make the final decision on the company's future towards the end of December or early January.