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Food banks feed equivalent to Dewsbury's population in last year

New figures from the Trussell Trust have shown that over 60,000 people in the Calendar region have relied on food banks in the last year.

The equivalent to the population of Dewsbury have used food banks in the last year Credit: Press Association

60,186 people received three days' emergency food from the charity's food banks the equivalent of feeding the population of Dewsbury for three days.

The charity has 450 food banks nationwide, which are run in partnership with churches and communities.

Last year the UK public donated 10,280 tonnes of food.

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Morrisons boss sending office staff to shop floor

The new boss of supermarket chain Morrisons is sending head-office staff onto the shop floor in a bid to improve communication with shoppers.

David Potts, who started work on Monday, told 2,000 office workers that he will be working in a store over Easter week and that he wanted them to do the same for at least one week each year.

He has urged workers at the Bradford-based chain to "listen hard" to customers and colleagues while they are on the shop floor as the company looks to reverse a period of falling sales and heavy annual losses.

I want to listen hard and respond to the views of as many customers and staff as I can.

I strongly believe that we are all retailers and we can learn how to serve our customers better when we are working in our stores or when we do our own shopping.

– David Potts, Morrisons

Mr Potts, who has more than 40 years retailing experience at Tesco, recently replaced Dalton Philips, who was ousted after leading the retailer since 2010.

The shop-floor initiative mirrors one put in place by new Tesco boss Dave Lewis before Christmas when he asked more than 4,000 employees including senior executives to stack shelves and operate tills.

Morrisons recently reported a loss of £792 million due to the lower value of its property estate while it posted a drop in like-for-like sales of 5.9%.

However, the sales trend improved in its most recent quarter with a decline of 2.6%.

Meadowhall set for £50 million refurbishment

Meadowhall Shopping Centre, based in Sheffield, South Yorkshire has today announced a £50 million refurbishment programme to mark the Centre’s 25th anniversary.

Credit: Artist Impression

The refurbishment works will start later in the year and will complete by the end of 2017.

The works - which will largely be completed out of hours to enable all retail and leisure operators to trade throughout the period - will create districts within the centre, each with a different finish including wood and punctured metal. The works will also enable a number of retailers to install ‘double height’ shop fronts.

The refurbishment will further include new ‘way finding’, mall seating and lighting as well as the installation of lighting artwork.

This latest refurbishment announcement follows the recent £3 million upgrade of the Park Lane area of the Shopping Centre, which was completed in 2014.

Regional unemployment falls by 30,000

Unemployment in Yorkshire fell by 30,000 in the quarter to January, official figures have revealed.

Credit: Press Association

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), a total of 161,000 people were unemployed in the region between November and January.

The region's unemployment rate was 6% and saw a drop of 15.7% during the period.

Nationwide, unemployment has dipped to a near seven-year low after a fall of more than 100,000, while a record number of people are in work.

The jobless total is 1.86 million, the lowest since the summer of 2008 and almost half a million down on a year ago. The jobless rate is now 5.7%, compared to a European Union average of 9.8%.

The number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance fell by 31,000 to 791,200 in February - the 28th consecutive monthly reduction.

The ONS also reported that employment increased by 143,000 in the latest quarter to January to almost 30.1 million, the highest since records began in 1971.

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£24 million boost for Lincolnshire and East Yorkshire

A multi-million pounds boost has been announced for the local economy in Lincolnshire and East yorkshire.

A total of just over twenty four million pounds has been awarded to projects and businesses there, including money for the regeneration of Cleethorpes and Scunthorpe Town centres.

Cleethorpes pier: setting for today's announcement

Three and a half thousand new homes are also planned as part of the Lincolnshire Lakes development. The funding has come from the Goverment's growth deal programme.

MP Martin Vickers, left, and Lord Richard Newby announce the good news

Future of Sleaford heritage site is uncertain

Questions are being asked about the future of a disused heritage site in Sleaford - following the announcement earlier this month that Tesco will no longer be building a new store in the town.

Plans for Sleadford

The supermarket's withdrawal of support for the area has had a knock on effect on plans to redevelop 'The Maltings' - a site on which North Kesteven District Council wanted to develop a number of houses, apartments, restaurants and shops.

The authority says it now intends to begin a fresh public consultation for residents and businesses - and says it could be six months before a decision is made.

Work starts on Scarborough's multi-million pound water park

Work on a multi-million pound water park in Scarborough’s North Bay is getting underway today. Construction is expected to take around 14 months and the park is due to open for Easter 2016. It's hoped it will attract up to half a million visitors a year.

The attraction will initially feature four water rides, a wave pool,a luxury spa suite and an outdoor iodine infinity pool (a pool heated to 36° C with massage jets, which can help enhance health and well being). There are also plans for other features to be added to the water park under future development phases.

It will be built on Burniston Road car park.

The water park forms part of the much wider redevelopment of Scarborough’s North Bay, known as The Sands.

To say everyone involved in this project is very excited with this week’s fantastic news is an understatement. An attraction of this quality and scale will bring massive economic benefits, not just to Scarborough, but the wider borough and Yorkshire as well, both in the construction phase and once it is open.

– Cllr Derek Bastiman, Scarborough Borough Council

Tour de France spending boost in Calderdale

Last summer's Tour de France brought an extra £12.5 million to Calderdale, according to figures released by the council. Hotels and B&Bs were among those to benefit, with visitors spending nearly £3 million on accommodation.

I'm delighted by these findings, which show the clear benefits that participation in the Tour de France brought to Calderdale. This can be measured both in terms of the immediate impact on our local economy and, in the longer term, the legacy.

We know there are keen cyclists who will want to tackle the challenges of the route themselves this summer. There are also spectators and viewers who will want to explore our beautiful landscapes and quirky towns, bringing lasting benefits for our tourism industry.

– Cllr Stephen Baines, Calderdale Council
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