The man in charge of Amazon’s Swindon fulfilment centre spoke about how staff are coping with the demand of Black Friday orders.

General manager David Tindal says the online retail giant is seeing no sign of a decline in its popularity.

He told the PA news agency that more than 2,000 employees at the Symmetry Park site ship millions of items each week and that they are preparing for its busiest time of year.

Swindon Advertiser: Amazon's Swindon fulfilment centreAmazon's Swindon fulfilment centre (Image: PA)

Mr Tindal said: “There’s a lot of talk about whether Black Friday’s past its peak.

“All I can say is from that from Amazon’s perspective it’s as busy as ever. We’re not seeing any sign of a decline.”

He oversees operations at one of Amazon’s 30 UK fulfilment centres, which has a footprint of 550,000 square feet - the size of about eight football pitches - and four floors.

The human and robot workforce select, package, and send order from a stock of around 30 million items that are in the depot at any one time.

Mr Tindal added: “Black Friday’s really exciting. For us, the period from Black Friday through to Christmas is the busiest time of the year.

“We spend 10 months getting ready for this. We’re expecting it all to run super smoothly.

“We’ll be really busy but it’s a really good fun time. We do a lot of fun activities with the individuals who are working here.

“I’ll get a chance to do quite a lot of the jobs in the building. It’s a great time of year.

“[Consumer confidence] seems surprisingly buoyant at the moment.

“Within Amazon, we’re busier than ever. There seems to be more and more demand.”

Swindon Advertiser:

The £400 million distribution centre at Symmetry Park in Swindon opened in December 2021 creating 1,300 jobs.

It uses 6,000 robots - that cost several thousand pounds each - to find and transport stock to the point of sending.

The site aims for an item to have been found and on a truck out for delivery within two hours of a customer placing the order.

However, Mr Tindal said the site relied on the intelligence of its human staff, that total automation would “not arrive in our lifetime”, and that delivery speed was under constant review for improvement.

Amazon has announced it will start using drones to deliver parcels in the UK in less than an hour, starting in one yet-to-be-disclosed location at the end of next year.

Mr Tindal said: “That’s what’s driven Amazon’s success, that obsession with what customers want.”