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North East has highest unemployment in Great Britain

North East unemployment stands at 9.2%, the highest in the country, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics.

By contrast, the UK average rate is just 6% after a huge fall in the number of unemployed people.

North East unemployment remains the highest in the country Credit: PA

In total, 118,000 people were unemployed in the North East in the months between July and September 2014, the latest figures available.

The figures show little change since the previous quarter. However, the rate has dropped by 0.9% since the previous year.

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Labour accuse Cameron of 'con trick' on roads investment

The Labour Party has reacted to David Cameron's announcement on improvements on the A1 north of Newcastle.

Michael Dugher, Shadow Transport Secretary, said it was a "con trick" that involved "no additional money". Catherine McKinnell, MP for Newcastle North, said there were "no actual details" about what improvements would be carried out.

David Cameron said the Coalition was backing the UK's road network and "spending more than any Government since the big expansion of the 1970s".

The plans involve spending £15 billion on the roads between now and 2020 and the Prime Minister said the A1 north of Newcastle was a priority.

The A1 near the village of Felton in Northumberland. The road is single-carriage in much of the county, despite being a major arterial link between England and Scotland. Credit: PA
David Cameron talking to workers during a tour of construction works underway at Cat Thorpe interchange near Rugby in Warwickshire earlier today. Credit: PA

Far from taking big decisions on transport, Cameron has dithered for five years on airport expansion and has been so slow to bring forward the HS2 Bill that it won't pass in this Parliament. This desperate so-called announcement of promised road improvements includes no additional money and people simply won't fall for it."

– Michael Dugher, Shadow Transport Secretary

We are now not only spending as much on rail as any Government since Victorian times, but on roads we are spending more than any Government since the big expansion of the 1970s. Between now and 2020, we have plans for £15 billion of road spending. That could lead to an extra 100 schemes being undertaken on our roads, and we are looking specifically at those pinch points, those problem areas, that businesses and people have told us about, and told us are so essential."

– David Cameron, Prime Minister

David Cameron: A1 "really key road" for the North East

David Cameron has described the A1 north of Newcastle as a "really key road" for the region.

The Prime Minister said it was one of the main "pinch points" in the country that he wants to benefit from new Government cash.

Speaking at business group the CBI's annual conference, he pledged to spend £15bn on improving Britain's roads between now and 2020.

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Cameron pledges £15bn for 100 road projects

The Prime Minister has pledged to spend £15bn on improving Britain's roads between now and 2020.

Speaking at the CBI's annual conference today David Cameron said up to 100 new road schemes could start work in the next few years as key roads such as the A303 in the West of England, the A1 north of Newcastle, the A47 in the East of England and roads that crossed the Pennines all got improvements.

He said: "We are now not only spending as much on rail as any government since Victorian times but on roads we are now spending more than any government since the big expansion of the 1970s."

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Cameron's 'road revolution' will 'trash' environment

Areas of protected countryside will be "trashed" by a £15bn "road revolution" the government is expected to formally announce in the Autumn Statement, transport campaigners have warned.

Chris Todd, roads campaigner at the Campaign for Better Transport, said:

The road building schemes the Government is so keen to talk up will trash protected areas and do nothing for the economy.

It makes no sense to spend billions ploughing more lanes of traffic through our National Parks or desecrating irreplaceable historic sites like Stonehenge.

These schemes will make people more dependent than ever on their cars, place greater costs on the NHS, while failing to tackle problems like the massive backlog of pot holes blighting local roads.

– Chris Todd
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PM: UK's future relies on 'world-class infrastructure'

Potential projects include tunnelling under Stonehenge. Credit: PA

The UK needs "world-class infrastructure" if it is to secure its future, the Prime Minister will say when he signals plans for major structural changes to some of Britain's busiest roads.

David Cameron is expected to signal a £15bn lifeline to Britain's congested roads, which will be detailed in next month's Autumn Statement.

In a speech to the CBI's annual conference, Mr Cameron will say:

And I can tell you this today: in three weeks' time you will see an autumn statement where we choose the future again. At its heart is the biggest, boldest and most far-reaching road improvement programme in four decades: over 100 improvements to our major roads.

Hundreds of extra lane miles on our motorways and trunk roads. The green light given to major projects that have been stalled for years. Action to improve some of the most important arteries in our country - like the A303 and the A1 - which for too long have held parts of our country back. And all underpinned by over £15bn worth of investment.

This will be nothing less than a roads revolution - one which will lead to quicker journey times, more jobs, and businesses boosted right across the country.

– David Cameron
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PM: '£15BN cash injection' for UK's worst roads

Britain's worst roads will get a £15bn makeover after David Cameron announces a huge cash boost to tackle congestion on motorways, trunk and A roads in a speech to business leaders later today.

David Cameron Credit: PA

The Prime Minister will tell the Confederation of British Industry's (CBI) hundreds of extra lane miles will be created on motorways and trunk roads as part of a "roads revolution" that will speed up journey times.

The PM believes the project will be the "biggest, boldest and most far-reaching" upgrade to the UK's road network in a generation after details are announced in next month's Autumn Statement.

Among plans considered by the Government are proposals to build under Stonehenge to help ease congestion on the A303.

Work on stretches of the A1 round Newcastle, roads across the Pennines, the A47 in the east of England and the A27 on the south coast are also in line for funding.

Britain's neglected roads have been slowly getting worse - a survey from the Asphalt Industry Alliance in April revealed it would cost at least £12bn to get roads in England and Wales back to a "reasonable" condition.

However, in 2013 that cost was estimated at £10.5bn.

A1 to be upgraded with £15bn roads cash fund

A1 Northumberland. Credit: PA

The green light will be given to fund improvements on the A1 north of Newcastle, the Prime Minister will announce later.

The promised upgrades are part of £15bn of investment to tackle more than 100 'problem hotspots' on England's hotspots.

David Cameron will tell business leaders that hundreds of extra lane miles will be created on motorways and trunk roads as part of a "roads revolution" that will speed up journey times.

Money will also be set aside to fund improvements on the A1 Western Bypass around Newcastle and Gateshead.

Mr Cameron will tell the Confederation of British Industry's (CBI) annual conference in London the plans for the "biggest, boldest and most far-reaching" upgrade to roads in a generation will be announced in next month's autumn statement.

He is expected to say: "The green light given to major projects that have been stalled for years.

"Action to improve some of the most important arteries in our country – like the A303 and the A1 – which for too long have held parts of our country back. And all underpinned by over £15bn worth of investment."

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