A group of workers “dumped at a moment’s notice” when a Barrhead-based construction firm closed its doors last year have received a collective pay-out of approximately £250,000.

Allma Construction and its sister company Centre Plant Limited, both of which were based on Muriel Street, entered administration last August with blame placed on cashflow problems and a downturn in the housebuilding industry.

Allma, which was founded in 1991, supplied specialist groundwork services to housebuilders, while Centre Plant leased plant and machinery and provided haulage services.

The businesses had a combined turnover of £25million and employed 188 people (184 for Allma and four for Centre Plant).

Initially it was reported that 181 staff members had been made redundant due to the collapse, but in September administrators confirmed that no jobs had been saved at either Allma or Centre Plant.

Many of those laid off had spent their working lives with the companies – in some cases up to 25 years.

Solicitors Thompsons Scotland recently represented 85 of the former Allma staff members at an employment tribunal who were dismissed “out of the blue”.

The tribunal found in April that there had been a failure by the employer to consult employee representatives before they made everyone redundant.

Due to this failure to carry out a consultation process, the tribunal awarded the 85 former staff members 90 days’ pay which is the maximum protective award or compensation that businesses can be ordered to pay out in such instances.

In situations like this, however, where the firm has gone into administration, the tab is picked up and paid out by the government’s redundancy payment service.

The amount that the redundancy payment service can pay out is capped at eight weeks’ pay which is what the 85 employees have now received or are receiving following a process whereby the judgement is used to obtain the money from the service.

Paul Kissen the senior employment lawyer at Thompsons Scotland who secured the cash for the workers, told the Barrhead News: “Yet again we have seen a group of loyal and hardworking people dumped at a moment's notice with a complete disregard of employment law.

“This is becoming far too common not just in Scotland but across the UK.

"It was extremely gratifying to help secure the Allma workers this money as otherwise some would have received nothing.

“It's important for others who find themselves in this kind of situation to know that they can get legal help when their employers go into administration denying them rightful compensation.”

When it was revealed last August that the company had ceased trading and assets from it would be sold, Stuart Robb of the appointed administrators FRP Advisory described Allma a "long-established" and "highly regarded" supplier of specialist groundworks services.

At the time, the administrator also said that the business had "unfortunately been severely affected by a downturn in the homebuilding markets and rising labour and material costs, and despite the best efforts of the directors in exploring other options administration was the only option."

In September, as the wind down of both businesses continued, he added: "The joint administrators appreciate this has been a very difficult time for the staff, suppliers and local community and would like to thank everyone involved with Allma Construction and Centre Plant for their support during the administration process.”