North Lincs businesses are using £10m funding to help create jobs
BUSINESSES have welcomed the opportunity to create new jobs in the region using Government funding.
North Lincolnshire Council was handed £10 million as part of the Regional Growth Fund (RGF) programme.
Council bosses are expecting to have created around 400 jobs by March, with half of the £10 million still to be allocated.
The news comes as a boost for the region after blows to the jobs market in recent months.
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It also adds to other proposed developments in pointing to a brighter economic future for North Lincolnshire.
Alan Dick Communications, of Scunthorpe, is among the companies allocated funds using the RGF money.
It has been handed £254,045 and will create 21 jobs, including positions for project managers, financial analysts, engineers and support staff.
The company provides telecommunications services to the rail industry and is based on the Normanby Enterprise Park.
It will use the money to support investment in equipment, staff training and research and development.
Company director Jonathan Lovell said: "We are delighted to be working with the RGF, as part of the drive to support progressive companies.
"We are rapidly developing our business to meet the growing demand for the telecommunications specialism within the UK rail sector.
"We will continue to grow our head count significantly over the next 18 months.
"With the support of the RGF, we are able to accelerate employment opportunities for people and invest in retraining new employees in rail telecoms.
"In addition, a substantial proportion of the funding is earmarked for development projects.
"At Alan Dick Communications we pride ourselves on offering our customers innovative solutions and are very excited about having this additional resource to draw upon."
Humberside Engineering Training Association (HETA) has acquired £364,000, which it will use to create 70 new jobs.
Eric Colliss, general manager at HETA, said the fund would go directly to paying apprentices training allowance.
He said: "The money will pay our apprentices training allowance and this will allow us to train the apprentices to a high standard.
"We have secured 33 trainee places this year and 25 per cent of them have already secured future jobs.
"The RGF is great because it keeps the volumes of apprentices up in a period of downturn in activity.
"The council should be applauded for the scheme and their efforts should be praised.
"It has allowed us to give young people more opportunities and the high quality training they need to get well paid jobs.
"I would recommend other companies to apply for the RGF and want to raise the profile of the scheme.
"Hopefully other companies will get involved."
Jenny Couch, head of economic development and area renaissance at the council, said: "We need to create a total of 500 jobs for the £10 million programme, so we are well on track to deliver on these."
The RGF initiative aims to support businesses, against the backdrop of the poor economic climate.
One of its major objectives is to create employment opportunities.
Latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show 4,606 people were claiming the Jobseekers' Allowance benefit in North Lincolnshire in November.
This represented a drop of 209 people from the previous month but the percentage figure of 4.5 remained above the national average.
North Lincolnshire has suffered several jobs blows in recent times.
Around 480 positions are set to be lost when the Kimberly-Clark plant in Barton-Upon-Humber closes this year.
The closure of the Lloyds banking group offices in Scunthorpe last month meant 185 posts were lost.
A further 26 people were made redundant when the Second Byte IT social enterprise went into voluntary receivership.
Four of those jobs were at its subsidiary Click-PC, which was forced to close its store on Market Hill in Scunthorpe town centre.
But the RGF adds to other opportunities aimed at helping the region to prosper.
They include a proposed marine energy park on the South Humber Bank, which is set to create thousands of jobs.
The Able UK scheme is to include a 1,729-metre long quay on land near East Halton.
The plans also include facilities for the manufacture and transportation of wind turbines to sites in the North Sea.
The Scunthorpe Telegraph's Your Life Your Future campaign also aims to increase employment and raise aspirations.
Councillor Liz Redfern, the leader of North Lincolnshire Council, said the authority was doing all it could to create jobs.
She said: "We are working really hard to deliver as many job opportunities as we can.
"The £10 million the Government has provided is making a massive difference and I intend to do everything possible to secure better paid jobs for residents in our area.
"The Scunthorpe Telegraph's Your Life Your Future campaign is an added bonus.
"I am proud that we are working together to give confidence to job-seekers and businesses alike that North Lincolnshire is the place to work and do business."