New jobs on way but claimants up

Pictured with staff at the Wynyard site are(left to right) Katherine Lancaster of the DFT, Jenny Copeland Northgate Client Services Director,  Sharon Pierson of the DFT and  Steve Wallis of Hartlepool College of Further Education.

Pictured with staff at the Wynyard site are(left to right) Katherine Lancaster of the DFT, Jenny Copeland Northgate Client Services Director, Sharon Pierson of the DFT and Steve Wallis of Hartlepool College of Further Education.

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TWENTY-FIVE new jobs are on the way as a local business centre benefits from a company’s contract win.

Northgate Public Services has won a contract from the Government for the national Blue Badge Improvement Service for disabled drivers.

The Regional Business Centre, based in Wynyard Business Park, is now on the look out for local people who can fill the vacancies.

The boost comes just two days after figures revealed that the number of jobless benefits claimants in the town had increased.

Hartlepool saw 67 more people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance in the last month as figures rose to 4,143 in July, compared to 4,076 in June.

The figures mean Hartlepool has the eighth highest rate of people claiming the benefit in the country, standing at 7.1 per cent compared to 3.8 per cent nationally.

The centre, which employs 42 people, will help to deliver the five-year national Blue Badge Improvement Service.

The service is aimed at responding to the high demand for badges, preventing fraud and also improving customer service, administration and enforcement of the scheme.

Joe Bradley, executive director for Northgate Public Services, said: “The Business Centre opened in 2006, in a small office on Wynyard Park, with a team of six people and has gone from strength to strength.

“We now occupy a much bigger office and employ 42 people who work on various contracts.

“This is a really exciting time for us as we are working to support new economic opportunities in the local area.

“We are delighted to bring approximately 25 much needed new jobs to Teesside and are now actively recruiting for a variety of vacancies.”

In another boost for the town and the company, Northgate has announced it will team up with Hartlepool College of Further Education as part of a modern apprenticeship programme which will offer young people the opportunity to gain valuable on-the-job experience.

Steven Wallis, assistant principal at the college, said: “Hartlepool College is delighted to be working in partnership with Northgate in order to offer apprenticeships in the field of business and administration.

“Northgate will provide the employment, training and mentoring in an attractive and progressive working environment, while we will provide the structured learning and assessment consistent with national standards.

“It’s a superb opportunity to earn and learn at the same time, work for a superb company and achieve excellent qualifications.”

Meanwhile, the recent jobs figures also revealed that the number of Jobseeker’s Allowance claimants increased in Easington, Stockton North and Sedgefield.

The Easington constituency, which includes Peterlee, has seen a rise of 160 claimants, from 2,627 in June to 2,787 last month.

In the Stockton North constituency, which includes Billingham, Wolviston and parts of Wynyard, there was a rise of two claimants to 3,753 last month, and the Sedgefield constituency saw a rise of 155, from 2,088 to 2,243.

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