OXFORD'S Mini plant is shutting down today despite Brexit not going ahead as planned.

Workers had hoped last-minute developments could change BMW's plans to close its Cowley factory for four weeks after the original Brexit date, of March 29.

But the 'Spring Maintenance' closure is going ahead as planned until April 29.

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Oxford City Councillor Tom Hayes tweeted: "Feel very sorry for the workers of Cowley MINI plant. Oxford’s biggest employer has tried to be prudent in the face of government chaos by bringing forward and extending its shutdown.

"The plant can’t reverse the shutdown and may still get hit by a No Deal that it tried to avoid."

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The company's plans to move their normal summer shutdown were put in place due to uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

Spokesman Steve Wrelton said: "The maintenance period remains in place throughout April.

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"This is what our company and our workforce have planned for over many months and it is fixed into our business planning."

The German car manufacturer has consistently spoken out about the threat of a 'no deal' Brexit and said it could be forced to look at moving operations to Holland in the event of this 'worst case scenario'.

In September, a BMW Group spokesman explained: "As a responsible organisation, we have scheduled next year’s annual maintenance period at MINI Plant Oxford to start on 1 April, when the UK exits the EU, to minimise the risk of any possible short-term parts-supply disruption in the event of a no-deal Brexit."