HGV drivers working for Wincanton on the Argos contract in Essex will see their wages rise by between 20-30% after their union secured a “whopping” increase.

The Basildon drivers had been preparing for industrial action before Wincanton entered into negotiations with Unite.

Sharon Graham, Unite general secretary, described it as “a tremendous victory”.

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“This is an outstanding example of how, where workers are organised and stick together, earnings are higher and pay awards are larger.”

Unite has secured a number of pay increases for drivers recently, including those working on Wincanton contracts for Argos North West and the Heinz distribution contract.

Paul Travers, Unite regional officer, said: “Once Wincanton realised that our members were simply not prepared to continue to accept low pay any longer, a deal was able to be thrashed out through negotiations and industrial action was avoided.”

Wincanton said it would not be commenting.