SOFT drink manufacturing bosses have confirmed an iconic factory in Chelmsford will stop production in mid-March.

Last May, Britvic announced they would be ending their 150-year association with the city by closing its site in Widford in a bid to save £30million by 2016.

About 230 people are set to lose jobs at the factory which bottles products like Tango, J20 and Robinson’s Fruit Shoot.

Speaking to the Weekly News, bosses said they had not finalised the date when bottles will stop moving along the production line.

A company spokeswoman said: “It will be in mid-March.

“It has been our priority to minimise job losses and to support anyone who is affected by the closure as much as possible.

“We are delighted that more than 90 employees will be staying with the business and moving to jobs at other sites.

“While we are sad to be leaving Chelmsford, the closure is happening to make our factory network more efficient and competitive and it will help protect the long-term future of our company.”

Officials from the Unite union have been working with Britvic management to help keep job losses at a minimum.

Dave Turnbull, regional officer for Essex, said: “The view of many workers is they would have preferred to the factory stay open and it was demoralising when the announcement was made.

“However many have managed to get other job offers and we have managed to get an enhanced redundancy package.”