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Rolls Royce workers win record pay increase

Factory workers for car manufacturer Rolls Royce have been awarded a pay rise worth up to 18% after successful union negotiations between the company and trade union Unite.

Workers at the Goodwood factory will receive a base salary increase of 10%, and a one-off £2,000 payment from January. The overall package for 1,200 employees could be worth 18% to the lowest paid production line workers, in the largest single pay deal in the plant's history.

The rate of pay increase far exceeds the latest rate of inflation, which stands at 10.7% as of November 2022 according to figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS)

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Workers had initially voted overwhelmingly in favour (98%) of strike action in a member's ballot if favourable terms for a pay rise weren't met by the company.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: "This is a top notch pay deal for the Rolls Royce workforce. Rolls Royce Motor Cars are famous and iconic because of the workers’ craft and expertise. For years the workers had been underpaid and undervalued but that’s changing. The union has won the best pay deal since the site opened.”

"This is a testament to the organising efforts of the Unite reps at Goodwood. It’s also proof that our union’s laser sighted focus on jobs, pay and conditions is winning for workers."

Employees in industries such as nursing, rail and the Royal Mail are all preparing for or have already started striking as they seek suitable pay rises to deal with the ongoing cost of living crisis.

Figures released by the ONS in June 2022 showed how salaries were failing to rise with inflation, as annual earnings for full time employees had only increased by 0.2%.

A spokesperson for Rolls Royce said: "In the course of our normal pay negotiations process, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars was pleased that Unite the Union supported and recommended a positive pay deal.

"We can confirm that a pay rise of 10% will be awarded to all those covered by our collective bargaining agreement from January 2023. Negotiations were cordial and constructive throughout."