Yarn and fabric maker Carolina Mills is to close its plants in the towns of Valdese and Newton, with the loss of more than 220 jobs.

The 78-year-old company, which is based in Maiden, North Carolina, blames competition from imports for the closures.

Plant No 9 in Valdese is a commission dye and finishing facility for apparel, industrial and upholstery fabrics that employs 136 people, and is due to shut by 30 April.

Plant No 3 in Newton has 87 employees, makes woven fabrics for commercial, industrial and apparel products, and will cease operation by 31 May.