“Management has long recognised that the current range of wire rope hoists is too expensive to produce and as such was not viable in the longer term,” Davis said in a statement.

The announcement confirms the news that Hoist first printed in February.

Davis admitted that the phase-out will lead to “some” job losses in September-October 2005, though he did not specify how many. “Management anticipates that the majority of job losses will be covered by voluntary redundancies.”

He added that employees will be offered the possibility to retrain to work on the electric chain hoist manufacturing line, which will continue in Loughborough, or in maintenance services.

Morris Ltd will replace the 400 series with a new wire rope hoist design.

The change in the product portfolio comes as part of an upgrade of the Loughborough facility. Morris Ltd is installing new welding and girder assembly equipment. The company’s technical training centre, called the Morris Institute, will also be expanded. Davis also said that the company’s electric chain hoist manufacturing business is expanding.