Seven hundred Worcester workers have won a reprieve from the closure of the Worcester site of Shop Direct, part of the Littlewoods Shop Direct Group, the UK's largest home and online shopping retailer.
The company's proposal for closure, announced in July of this year, has now been removed from the table following a top-level meeting between Transport and General Workers Union deputy general secretary Jack Dromey and the chairman of the company David Simons.
This clears the way for Shop Direct to conduct a broad review of its warehouse capacity to report by the end of January, and this will form the basis for a full consultation with trade unions.
David Boardman, spokesman for Shop Direct, described the reprieve as an opportunity to take a "fresh look" at the business and said that what was needed now was to stimulate demand.
"We are working in conjunction with the Transport and General Workers Union and Worcester City Council and will come back with recommendations in January 2006."
However, Mr Dromey said that the case for the Worcester site, which employs over 2,500 workers, was "cast-iron".
"The proposal to close was absolutely wrong. I welcome the decision of the company to listen to reason, removing closure from the table. Problems remain and our emphasis now will be on winning work to fill spare capacity so that no Shop Direct worker need fear closure."
Alun Hayes, Transport and General Workers Union officer for Worcester, welcomed the companies decision, calling it a "positive step".
"Worcester has always felt in a strong position and we have always said that it is the best warehouse in terms of efficiency and industrial relations."
However, Shop Direct has not ruled out future closures and says that all options will be considered when the review is reported in January.
"It is too early to comment", Mr Boardman said.