ONE of Huntingdon s best-loved firms is to make 29 staff redundant. Racing car firm, the Lola Group, which is based in St Peters Road, said the job losses were across all departments but mostly affected people working on the composites side of its busine

ONE of Huntingdon's best-loved firms is to make 29 staff redundant.

Racing car firm, the Lola Group, which is based in St Peters Road, said the job losses were across all departments but mostly affected people working on the composites side of its business.

A statement said: "The redundancies are unfortunate but prudent, we are not immune from the general downturn.

"We fought against having to make these cuts for a long time leaving no stone unturned.

"It is essential for the future of the company that we make this adjustment in line with the difficult market conditions and to reduce costs.

"The reductions have come from all areas of the company. We are in a strong position on many new programmes but the timing of these programmes is absolutely vital.

"We hope that this is the lowest point in the economic trough and that we will be back to the more familiar position of looking for staff in the near future.'

The Lola Group, which owned by businessman Martin Birrane, is famed for its racing cars and last year had bid to become one of the new teams to compete in Formula 1.

The other side of its business includes design, engineering and manufacturing for industries such as aerospace, defence and communications.

John Bridge, chief executive of Cambridgeshire Chambers of Commerce, said the economy was going through another trough.

"The economy had improved by the end of last year but now it is faltering a bit. Huntingdonshire has not been hit as hard as other places but there will be redundancies to come, even after the recession has stopped because it will take businesses some time to recover.

"People were saying the recession was hockey stick shaped because the recovery would be slow but now they are saying it is L-shaped because things have flattened out."

Mr Bridge said employers may be concerned about a raft of new UK and EU legislation, including another Equality Bill and an Agency Workers' directive, which could put up their costs as well as the increase in National Insurance payments and pension reforms.

He said: "It is estimated that changes in legislation will cost UK businesses £25.6billion. This year we will see the economy improve but things will go slowly and there will be times when it drops back.