WORKERS at BMW's Oxford plant say they are growing increasingly fearful of a potential no-deal Brexit amid reports they could go without pay for two weeks.

The Cowley factory will close for at least two days from October 31 to minimise delays to deliveries, but several sources claim no-deal would mean a shutdown of at least a fortnight.

With all staff holiday allowance used up during the plant's month-long shutdown in April, its 4,500 employees could be forced to take unpaid leave, according to BMW's finance chief.

Earlier this week, it emerged the company could cut shifts in Cowley in the event of no-deal, with the plant's Unite union convenor, Steve Sargeant, revealing 'concern' has increased among workers.

Read also: BMW set to close Cowley factory as Brexit looms

He said: "It shows how bad no-deal would be for the workforce – it has heightened the feeling of nervousness.

"Of course people are worried, but they keep their heads down and get on with their jobs. They need to live and survive.

"We've already had a four-week shutdown and another one is going to be quite hard on some people."

Employees have already faced months of uncertainty, with BMW warning earlier this year that Britain leaving the European Union without a deal on October 31 may force 'some or all' Mini production to be moved to Holland.

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Nicolas Peter, BMW's chief financial officer, told the BBC the company currently had no plans to 'shift production' elsewhere.

But he added the Cowley plant was likely to produce fewer cars in the event of no-deal, affecting shifts, as World Trade Organisation tariffs would force BMW to raise the price of products produced in the UK and shipped abroad.

Meanwhile, in an article in the Financial Times, Mr Peter said staff holiday pay was used up during April's planned closure.

Read also: Four-week shutdown begins at Mini plant

He added: "We are not capable of [implementing] a second holiday period in 2019, so this could have a financial impact on our colleagues working in Oxford."

Mr Sargeant, an ex-maintenance technician who has worked at the plant since 2000, praised his colleagues but said he feared a no-deal Brexit could be a 'disaster'.

The 62-year-old Bicester resident said: "There's definitely going to be disruption and problems, but BMW have got contingency plans in place.

"We've got a really good workforce and their attitude throughout the Brexit debacle has been excellent.

"But we've got 70-odd nationalities in the plant, so it's bound to be a concern for everybody."

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He added: "We're under no illusions that if you work for a German company, Brexit is probably the last thing we want."

One car is built at the Cowley plant every 67 seconds, with 400,000 Minis sold across the world last year.

Read also: Building the Mini Electric in Cowley is 'huge' for Oxford

In July, a new Mini Electric was unveiled in Cowley, with production set to begin in November before being released in March.

BMW CEO Harald Kruger previously asked to meet Boris Johnson about the implications of no-deal, a move backed by Oxford East Labour MP Anneliese Dodds.

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She said: "BMW Cowley is one of the most productive automotive plants in Europe, which will help it to deal with any price rises and disruption.

"Nonetheless, if production costs rise substantially and there are severe delays at the ports, this will inevitably impact production, in Cowley as elsewhere."

Ms Dodds added: "I know that many BMW workers and their families will be concerned to hear the news about a potential shutdown.

Read also: MP calls for Prime Minister to face up to threat of no-deal Brexit on Mini plant

"I would like to reassure all my constituents who work at BMW that I am doing all I can to try and prevent a no-deal Brexit. I am also arguing for support to be provided as a matter of urgency, if the government somehow manages to force this outcome on our country."

The MP has been invited to Remain Labour Oxford's public meeting about the impact of no-deal on the plant, held at The Venue community centre in Cowley at 7pm tomorrow.

Read also: 60 Minis park up at brand's 60th birthday party

BMW spokesperson Steve Wrelton confirmed the plant would be closed on the evening of Thursday, October 31, and on Friday, November 1.

He said: "The decision has been taken to minimise the risk of any immediate disruption to the supply of parts in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit.

"Our preparations for Brexit have been ongoing since the referendum in 2016 and we have been working closely with suppliers in the UK and in Europe to ensure our systems and processes are ready.

"While we hope that a ‘no deal’ Brexit can be avoided, we have to plan for this potential worse-case scenario.

"Our decisions are made in the best interest of our business and our workforce at the appropriate time, based on the best information available."