Welsh secretary Peter Hain has joined the fight to keep open Burberry's factory in Treorchy, Wales.

Hain said in a letter to Burberry he could understand why the workers were so angered by the fashion firm's plans to shift production to lower-cost foreign locations.

"With Burberry having recorded profits of GBP84m (US$166.15m) I can understand why Burberry's workers feel cheated by the company's decision."

The closure will cause "immediate hardship" for the plant's workforce, Hain said, as well as hurting their families and the local community as a whole.

"Burberry's international success is based firmly in its 150-year-old roots in Britain, and I am particularly proud that this international success story is based in Wales," he added.

"How is it possible for such an iconic British brand to be manufactured anywhere other than Britain?"

Britain's General Union (GMB) is campaigning to keep the factory open, while Welsh actor Ioan Gruffurd has also voiced his opposition to the company's plans.