2,096 new jobs al­ready in 2016

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Town Hall View - John Holdich

If you read last week’s Peter­bor­ough Telegraph then you may have seen that on­line re­tailer Ocado is to open a dis­tri­bu­tion hub in the city cre­at­ing up to 230 jobs.

The news is hot on the heels of high street gi­ant House of Fraser re­ceiv­ing plan­ning per­mis­sion to build a dis­tri­bu­tion cen­tre, gen­er­at­ing up to 1,000 jobs.

We have a good track record in Peter­bor­ough for at­tract­ing new busi­nesses and jobs. We’ve seen 373 per cent jobs growth dur­ing the past 100 years, rank­ing us sec­ond out of 57 cities in Eng­land and Wales.

In the past three years alone Peter­bor­ough busi­nesses have added al­most 7,000 jobs to our econ­omy and our pri­vate sec­tor jobs mar­ket is now one of the most buoy­ant na­tion­ally, help­ing to push un­em­ploy­ment rates to the low­est level since the early 1990s.

It’s cer­tainly been a good few years, but this year is turn­ing out to be ex­cep­tional, with 2,096 jobs an­nounced so far. They’re from a real mix of in­dus­tries too, in­clud­ing re­tail, food, health­care and en­gi­neer­ing.

Many of th­ese jobs are a re­sult of new busi­nesses choos­ing to in­vest in the city, demon­strat­ing con­fi­dence in our econ­omy. What’s pleas­ing is that a good num­ber are be­ing gen­er­ated by ex­ist­ing busi­nesses.

En­gi­neer­ing firm Vo­gal Group, which es­tab­lished it­self in the city in the 1980s, will be em­ploy­ing an ex­tra 30 peo­ple at its site in Flet­ton. Webbs Mo­tor­cy­cles, which opened in the city in 2003, is also tak­ing on new staff. Ce­real pro­ducer Bokomo Foods has just moved to big­ger premises in Or­ton South­gate, in­evitably lead­ing to more jobs.

In­vestors clearly have faith in our city, which is help­ing com­pa­nies to es­tab­lish and main­tain a sta­ble foot­print in Peter­bor­ough and de­liver ex­cep­tional growth.

We have to make sure this con­fi­dence in our econ­omy con­tin­ues and that we re­tain and at­tract new busi­nesses from a va­ri­ety of sec­tors. Our partners at Op­por­tu­nity Peter­bor­ough con­tinue to work hard na­tion­ally and in­ter­na­tion­ally to at­tract new com­pa­nies to the city and sup­port those that are start­ing up or do­ing busi­ness here al­ready.

I be­lieve that we can see fur­ther growth across the busi­ness sec­tor if we press ahead with our pro­posed de­vo­lu­tion deal with gov­ern­ment that I’ve told you about in re­cent weeks.

You can read more about the pro­posal on our web­site and in par­tic­u­lar how it will sup­port busi­nesses and job growth.

We’re cur­rently con­sult­ing on the pro­pos­als and res­i­dents have un­til Tues­day to take part. You can com­plete an on­line sur­vey by vis­it­ing www.peter­bor­ough.gov.uk/ de­vo­lu­tion or pick up hard copies of the ques­tion­naire at Town Hall and Ba­yard Place re­cep­tions and all li­braries.

It’s not un­til you have a scare that you truly ap­pre­ci­ate the fan­tas­tic work of our health ser­vices. Last Wed­nes­day I went for my reg­u­lar eye check at the op­ti­cians and was told, to my sur­prise, that I had a hole in the retina of my left eye which if left un­treated could have led to blind­ness.

They promptly made an ap­point­ment for me to at­tend Peter­bor­ough City Hospi­tal the fol­low­ing day, which I at­tended and was asked to re­turn at 8am the fol­low­ing day for key­hole surgery to re­pair what turned out to be three tears in my retina. I was home by 1.30pm on Fri­day and on the mend.

The ser­vice I re­ceived was fan­tas­tic and I would like to thank the health ser­vices for their pro­fes­sion­al­ism and speed of ser­vice.

It goes to show how im­por­tant it is to have reg­u­lar eye checks. With­out mine last week I would be walk­ing around un­aware that I could one day wake up blind.

I’d like to say a big well done to Louis Smith from Eye who im­pressed on the men’s pom­mel horse to take sil­ver in Rio at the week­end. Well done too to wind­surfer Nick Dempsey who won a sil­ver medal. Nick grew up in Peter­bor­ough and learned to wind­surf at Ferry Mead­ows.

They’re amaz­ing achieve­ments and we are al­ready con­sid­er­ing how we as a city can con­grat­u­late Louis and Nick.

If you’re look­ing for some­thing for to do with the chil­dren on Satur­day then the Cel­e­bra­tion of Youth event in Cathe­dral Square could be just the thing. The free event has been or­gan­ised by the YMCA and will give young peo­ple the chance to showcase their tal­ents or have a go at art and sport ac­tiv­i­ties, find out more about em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties and much more.

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