It is billed as the end of an era, as Ford has announced to trade union representatives that it will cease manufacturing cars in the UK after more than a hundred years. And close two of its factories in the UK. The Swaythling Southampton factory and the Dagenham stamping plant, with the loss of up to 1300 jobs.

The move is expected to take place next summer when both will be shut down as part of a wider restructuring plan by Ford, which is designed to stem losses in Europe by slashing fixed costs.

This move follows the news that Ford said it was closing its factory at Genk in Belgium with the loss of 4,300 jobs to cut costs.

A union spokesman, described it as devastating for Ford's British workers. He said "This is very bad news for UK manufacturing," adding that "Ford's track record in Britain is one of broken promises and factory closures."

However, Ford, which employs 11,400 people at sites across the UK, is also expected to announce some good news for its British workforce as the Dagenham engine plant which will build Ford's new Panther engine, which will safeguard thousands of jobs. But it is doubtful this will appease the workers who are facing redundancy from this once mighty US car manufacturer.

Written and Presented by Ann Salter