MORE than 100 staff at an historic building company have been left redundant after it went into administration.

Symm & Company, which includes Symm Joinery that is based in Pershore, has a building and decorating history stretching back over 200 years.

Until this week it employed an estimated 150 staff, with 50 in Pershore, but on Wednesday morning they were told the bad news by managing director Phil Morton.

One long-serving member of staff who asked not to be named said: "We were told the company is now in administration – everybody was made redundant.

"I think it came as a shock to everyone: there had been a few whispers but you did not know it was coming... you think things are going to turn a corner.

"The current market is very difficult: it is increasingly difficult to win the big contracts because there is so much competition out there.

"Unfortunately the pipeline of work was not there."

The member of staff said following the briefing from Mr Morton workers were given paperwork by administrators Critchleys.

Symm & Company going into administration has not yet been officially logged on Companies House documentation.

The company website says: "With a continuous presence in Oxford since the reign of King George III, Symm employs the real characters behind some of the city's glorious buildings.

"Our chairman, James Axtell, is the great-great grandson of the talented mason, Thomas Axtell, a partner of the Victorian master builder, Joshua Symm. Our building and decorating history stretches back over 200 years.

"Today, Symm has gained a reputation for delivering beautiful buildings for satisfied clients.

"From traditional country cottages to stylish London penthouses, historic national monuments to commercial public buildings, Symm has the expertise, experience and dedication to ensure quality, craftsmanship and the highest professional standards."

Administrator Lawrence King of Critchleys in Oxford said: "The company has experienced recent tough trading conditions and the current pipeline of work is not sufficient to continue this longstanding and highly regarded brand.

"The directors have explored various alternative paths but have taken the difficult decision to appoint an administrator.

"The company operated its joinery and cabinetry business from two sites in Pershore, Worcestershire, with its main construction function operating from Oxford.

"Any creditor, employee or customer of the company will be able to contact the administrator’s office on or 01865 261219."