Tesco has announced a major restructure of its distribution network in the UK, with the transfer of nearly 2,000 jobs resulting from the closure of sites in Harlow, Weybridge and Chesterfield and the opening of new RDCs in Reading and Dagenham.

It said the new network would cut road miles and the modern technology at the new sites would provide a better service for stores and suppliers.

“We’ve been reviewing our distribution network, and have confirmed plans to close some of our current distribution centres and open new ones that will give our customers a better service and improve working conditions for our colleagues,” said a spokesman. 

“Colleagues who are affected will be offered jobs at other Tesco sites, including at the two new distribution sites we have confirmed will be opening in Reading and Dagenham.”

However, local MPs and union leaders attacked the plans. “This is absolutely devastating news for our members and their families,” said Usdaw national officer Joanne McGuinness. “Usdaw will be entering into a 90-day consultation with Tesco to explore all possible options to reduce any job losses.”