ONE of the area’s major employers has had to freeze recruitment after suffering a difficult trading year.

Webbs garden centre, based in Wychbold, near Droitwich Spa, could also make up to three people redundant after taking the step to restructure the company after being hit by poor weather in 2012.

Webbs chairman, Ed Webb, said: “Just as with many other companies in the UK, 2012 proved a very difficult trading year for Webbs. This was partly due to very poor weather from April to October and despite a more encouraging couple of months before Christmas, we are finding times are tough.

“The organisational restructure includes a recruitment freeze and, if no alternative can be found, we may need to make up to three compulsory redundancies. This is of course, a last resort, but if this is sadly the case, we will work with the individuals to fully support them in finding alternative employment.”

Mr Webb added: “Webbs is a family firm which has a workforce of 310 full and part time employees. We are a major local employer and support many community initiatives and we look forward to this continuing. Economic times are difficult for many and we are doing our utmost to ensure Webbs stays in good shape financially and remains a leading force in the horticultural industry and local community.”