Purpose: This paper aims to examine the more militant response of a minority of workers to collective redundancy and restructuring in Britain since 2007. Design/methodology/approach: The paper deploys secondary sources to develop a series of grounded micro-factors to help explain the presence and absence of the deployment of the occupation tactic. Findings: Some headway is made in explaining why only a limited number of occupations took place against redundancy and restructuring. Practical implications: The method of occupation was not shown to be as effective as might have been thought in opposing redundancies. Social implications: These concern union strategies and tactics for resistance to redundancy and restructuring. Originality/value: The paper provides a grounded explanation of the phenomenon and incidence of worker occupations against collective redundancy and closure.