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Export success for Derbyshire engineering firm

by Nancy Cole

For many East Midlands businesses, 2014 is set to be a promising one when it comes to exporting their wares abroad.

The Derbyshire and Nottingham Chamber of Commerce says it's seen a trend in more companies getting savvier about finding new ways to sell their goods.

Nancy Cole has been to one Derbyshire firm that's blazing a trail with over half their business coming from abroad.

Hundreds set to flock to NFU Conference in Birmingham

Hundreds of people involved in the British farming industry will flock to Birmingham today and tomorrow for the annual NFU Conference.

The event will be held at the ICC in the city centre.

NFU President Peter Kendall is to step down. His successor will be announced on day two of the annual conference in Birmingham
NFU President Peter Kendall is to step down. His successor will be announced on day two of the annual conference in Birmingham Credit: Rui Vieira/PA

The conference is set to feature a line-up of speakers to discuss issues affecting the business, including Environment Secretary Owen Paterson, Sainsbury's chief executive Justin King, and New Zealand's High Commissioner, Sir Henry Lockwood Smith.

The new NFU president, deputy and vice presidents will also be announced.

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Derby hosts National Winter Ales Festival

One of the UK's biggest ale trade shows is taking place in Derby today, where the city has being making quite a name for itself in the brewery industry.

The Midlands has more breweries than anywhere else in the UK and nearly a third of those are in Derby, where up to 12,000 visitors are expected to attend the show over four days.

The National Winter Ales Festival has more than 410 different varieties of ales on offer and event organiser Gillian Hough has described how people's tastes are changing.

Unemployment plummets in the West Midlands

Unemployment has fallen across the region, with around 35,000 more people in work in the final quarter of 2013 than in the previous three months - and the West Midlands has some of the best figures in the country.

Unemployment has fallen across the Midlands
Unemployment has fallen across the Midlands Credit: Gareth Fuller/PA

The West Midlands reported the second-biggest drop in unemployment in the UK, falling by 31,000 - or 8.3 per cent - in October to December.

The East Midlands fared less well, coming in ninth place with unemployment falling by just 4,000 or 6.9 per cent.

Official opening of JCB warehouse heralds 100 new jobs

The newest warehouse for Staffordshire-based JCB has been officially opened today, as the firm celebrates creating almost 100 new jobs in the past six months.

JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald officially opened the warehouse today
JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald officially opened the warehouse today Credit: JCB

JCB World Logistics, which has its world headquarters in Rocester, took over the former Blue Planet warehouse in Newcastle-under-Lyme in July last year - and since then, 80 new warehouse and office staff have been recruited, along with 20 new drivers.

And job figures are expected to more than triple in the next two years as the warehouse becomes fully operational.

The JCB world HQ in Rocester, Staffordshire
The JCB world HQ in Rocester, Staffordshire Credit: Rui Vieira/PA

JCB chief executive Graeme Macdonald today unveiled a plaque marking the official opening of the warehouse.

Speaking afterwards, he said:

Staffordshire is where JCB’s business started almost 70 years ago and Staffordshire is where our heart is, so I’m delighted that the opening of JCB World Logistics is bringing more employment opportunities to the county.

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JCB World Logistics centre opens today

JCB factory in Staffordshire Credit: Rui Viera / PA Wire / Press Association

JCB will officially open their new World Logistics centre in Newcastle-under-Lyme today. 100 jobs have been created since the announcement last June. The company hope to triple that within two years. The firm employs hundreds of people from across Staffordshire and Derbyshire,

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Talks being held over the future of Corby factory

Bosses at a food processing factory in Corby, where more than 900 jobs are under threat, are holding talks about the future of the site.

Solway Foods says closing the factory is a very real possibility as it is no longer viable.

The company has entered into a 45 day consultation with staff, but the Borough Council and MP Andy Sawford have set up a task force to try to save the site.

Click above to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Olivia Paterson.

900 jobs put at risk in Corby

Solway Foods have announced that their future in Corby is at risk, putting 900 jobs in doubt.

MP for Corby, Andy Sawford, says he has arranged 'urgent' talks with Solway Chief Executive, Vipal Patel.

I have spoken with representatives of Solway Foods today. My thoughts are with the 900 strong workforce who will now all be very worried about the future of their jobs. This news comes as a shock. Solway operate in a very competitive market, they have recently lost some customers and they tell me the Corby site is ageing. Solway have told me that they will consider all possibilities, including options for staying in Corby, and I have offered to help in anyway I can.

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