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A haulier within the AET Transport Group of companies has been placed into liquidation following sustained losses compounded by the impact of the coronavirus.

Andrew Trotter, AET Transport MD, told its Andover operation closed on 9 May and all staff were made redundant.

He said: “The Andover depot is the only part of AET that has been affected with the downturn in business, partly due to the Covid-19 problem but it has been loss making for some time and has been supported by Poole.

“With the downturn in Poole, the decision was made to close Andover to protect the Poole site.”

As well as AET Andover, the group includes Dorset Crane Hire, Curvin Transport and Eaton Poole.

The last available set of abbreviated accounts for AET Transport Andover, for the year ending 31 August 2019, stated: “Although there is a significant excess of current liabilities and deficiency of net assets, because of ongoing commitments to support the company from the main creditor and other related trading parties under common control, and other trade creditors, the directors consider it still appropriate for the financial statements to be prepared on a going concern basis.”

The Andover operation held a standard international licence for a total of 32 HGVs and 28 trailers.

Trotter explained that following Andover’s closure, Palletways took over the lease on the depot and it has now reopened as a network-owned and operated site, with new vehicles and trailers.

In January 2018, AET Transport celebrated 40 years in business and Trotter invested in a brand new Volvo FH 16 750 8x4 150-tonne tractor to mark the anniversary.

A spokeswoman for Palletways said: “We can confirm that AET Andover has ceased trading. To maintain continuation of our service and ensure minimal disruption to the network, Palletways implemented alternative arrangements for all future collections and deliveries in the area previously covered by AET Andover. We are committed to ensuring that customers receive the same first-class level of service that they have come to expect from Palletways and as a result we have maintained this service following the exit of AET Andover from the network.”