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Cleaning firm hopes to create 700 jobs

A cleaning and security firm is aiming to create 700 new jobs under expansion plans.

Warrington-based Westgrove Group said it planned to diversify into new industry sectors and boost turnover to over £30 million.

Steve Fives, who helped set up the firm, said the plan was to expand the workforce by 300 this year through 50 additional contracts.

"We're looking to be a viable alternative to the 'big boys', the plc's that dominate our industry," he said.

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Blackpool Council hit by job losses

It's expected 250 permanent jobs and 100 contract positions will be lost in each of the next two financial years.

This year each and every service is expected to make a saving, some greater than others but they will all start the next financial year with less staff or money to do their job.

We have looked over every single penny we spend and prioritised accordingly.

For the last four years all we have had is brutal cut after brutal cut.

The prospect of losing £36 million over the next two financial years is incomprehensible.

– Simon Blackburn, Leader of Blackpool Council

Blackpool council leader says "brutal" cuts mean tough times ahead

Blackpool Council says it's facing £36million in budget cuts. Credit: PA

Blackpool Council has warned staff it's cutting 700 jobs over the next two years.

The authority says it needs to axe the jobs to make savings as it deals with a £36m budget shortfall.

Council Leader Simon Blackburn said the authority has: "looked over every single penny we spend and prioritised accordingly."

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Region has its work cut out, says survey

Job search: A woman scours ads in the hope of finding work Credit: PA Images

Job confidence in the North West is the second lowest in the country, according to the careers service. It looked at whether people felt they had the right skills and qualifications and whether they were encouraged by signs of economic recovery.

Over 4,000 people in England took part in the index, which is based on seven areas ranging from job and personal experience to qualifications and opportunities. It shows an overall job confidence score of 51.8 out of 100.

The picture across the country is a relatively consistent one but whilst job confidence is highest in London and the South East of England, confidence is lowest in the West Midlands.

The North West was second lowest with a rate of 51.2 out of 100 .

Joe Billington, director of the National Careers Service, said: "While people are slowly becoming more confident, we see significant numbers of people who need support and encouragement to take the right steps to a new job."

Jobs axe was "not an easy decision" says Direct Line boss

Direct Line insists it will try to find work for hundreds of staff made redundant across the North West.

Bosses told 485 workers in Liverpool that their office will close. 80 people at the firm's Manchester site also face losing their jobs.

The firm is cutting costs nationwide.

The proposed closure of our Liverpool claims centre was not an easy decision to make and we understand the effect this announcement has on our people. We have now commenced a period of consultation with those potentially affected and they will be supported by their employee representative bodies.

While this is currently a proposal, the plan is not immediate. In the months to follow we aim to do as much a possible to mitigate the impact of potential redundancy through redeployment and by working with employers in the local area to identify opportunities.

– Steve Maddock, Managing Director of Claims, Direct Line Group
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