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Government blocks Coventry Gateway development

The multi-million pound Coventry Gateway development which would have created thousands of jobs has been rejected by the government.

There were plans to develop an area of 741 acres around Coventry Airport Credit: PA

Eric Pickles, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, turned down plans to develop the 700 acre site around Coventry Airport, that could have created up to 10,000 jobs.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Gateway plans aimed to develop an area of 741 acres to the north, east and south of Coventry airport. Plans for the development included a major new technology and manufacturing and distribution park.

The decision has been criticised by Coventry City Council’s Cabinet Member for Business, Enterprise and Employment, Kevin Maton.

The scheme, put forward by Coventry and Warwickshire’s Local Enterprise Partnership had the potential to provide a real boost to the local economy, and I’m amazed the Minister couldn’t support the plans.

It’s particularly disappointing news, given that the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, Vince Cable was in the area just yesterday talking about the vital role the region and Coventry engineering expertise played in the economy nationally.

This scheme would have helped support further development of this expertise while creating thousands of jobs.

– Cllr Kevin Maton, Coventry City Council’s Cabinet Member for Business, Enterprise and Employment

Meanwhile Geoffrey Robinson, the MP for Coventry North West, said: “I’m hugely disappointed by this decision.

"This development had the prospect of attracting thousands of jobs into our city, this is a real slap in the face for our City.”


Virgin expansion brings 1,400 jobs to the Midlands

A major expansion of Virgin Media's broadband network is set to bring 1,400 jobs to the Midlands ITV News Central has been told.

Virgin Media is expanding its broadband network Credit: PA

The jobs will be in construction, engineering, sales and support roles.

The expansion will see 6,000 jobs created across the country under the £3 billion plans, with 1,000 apprenticeships trained at Virgin's Birmingham headquarters.

The company, which is owned by US firm Liberty Global, has described the five year plan as the single biggest investment in broadband digital infrastructure in the UK for more than a decade.

  1. National

Supermarket Waitrose to create 2,000 extra jobs

Waitrose is opening 15 new stores in 2015. Credit: PA

Waitrose has announced plans to create 2,000 extra jobs in 2015.

The supermarket said the positions would be in new and extended shops as well as an e-commerce grocery depot opening this year.

From spring, the retailer is opening 14 new shops including seven new supermarkets and seven Waitrose convenience stores.

The new stores will be in Oxford, Guildford, Basingstoke, Wollaton in Nottinghamshire, Milngavie in Dumbartonshire, Bagshot in Surrey,and Kings Cross, which will also house a new cookery school.

Smaller outlets will open in Heathfield in East Sussex and a further six locations in the south east.

Waitrose Director of Development Nigel Keen said: "Last year many of our branches received more than 10 applications for every vacancy - so we're delighted to be able to create an additional 2,000 roles in 2015."


Nottingham and Coventry in top 10 for job growth

A new report out today shows that Nottingham and Coventry have made it into the top 10 UK cities with the highest growth in jobs.

Nottingham council house Credit: Adam Peck/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The Centre for Cities' report looks at growth between 2004 and 2013.

Coventry was seventh on the list, with an 8.4% rise in jobs, just under 12,000.

Nottingham was 10th on the list, with a 7.7% rise in the number of jobs, just under 21,500.

240 jobs to go at Nottingham City Council

Nottingham council house Credit: Adam Peck/PA Archive/Press Association Images

240 jobs are to go at Nottingham City Council as part of plans to save around £27million from next year's budget.

The authority says it is on the brink of losing vital services. It is also proposing an increase in council tax. The budget goes for approval next March.

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