Mike Hill MP: Meaningful jobs are few and far between in region

The former Walkers crisp factory in Peterlee.
The former Walkers crisp factory in Peterlee.

Experts are now saying that they have overestimated the amount of salt added to foods which is bad for your health.

I’m sorry but every week now we seem to be getting health warnings that contradict previous ones and so no wonder we get confused.

For me, whether you used the little blue sachet or not, the Salt and Shake crisps were always the best.

Sad thing is that for no good reason the very thought of reaching for a bag of Walkers now turns me off simply because plenty of my constituents have been laid off due to the closure of the crisp factory in nearby Peterlee.

It really does worry me because if we are not careful that way lies Hartlepool.

Without business growth we rely on a handful of established big employers like Tata and Liberty Steel, EDF Energy, the council, Able UK, PD Ports, Niromax and Hereema to keep jobs going in the town; take any of the above out of the equation and the impact on employment opportunities in the town are enormous.

People in power simply don’t think about the consequences of such events.

The closure of Walkers was a massive hit to the local economy and, as one of my members of staff pointed out, the car park was full 24/7 due to the three shifts system and now it’s empty; a damning indictment of the Government’s pre Brexit industrial strategy let alone its post Brexit one.

Meaningful jobs are few and far between in this region and given the nightmare scenario of a no deal Brexit published only last week by the Government heaven help us!

More importantly heaven help our young people who naturally after school should be looking for new adventures after their A-level and GCSE results.

I really am proud of our young people for achieving the results they got last week, but in all honesty I do worry about their future prospects.

Nobody, but nobody in my opinion, has really paid proper attention to the Apprenticeship Levy and created proper meaningful jobs in their industries and the Government channelling of people into higher education has not only led to a saturation of the sector rendering degrees meaningless unless they are from high end universities, but saddle thousands of our kids into debts of £50 or £60 grand as soon as they graduate due to student loans.

Really? What kind of society do we live in today when, to quote Pink Floyd, we are ‘comfortably numb’ about the future prosperity of our own children for goodness sake!