The Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has been visiting two companies in County Durham where almost 300 jobs have been created or safeguarded with money from the Regional Growth Fund.
He met young apprentices at CAV Aerospace in Consett and launched a Liberal Democrat campaign to create a million new jobs nationwide.
Mr Clegg said he wanted to see the number of companies offering apprenticeships doubling to 200,000.
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The event returned for its fourth year with live bands and and a procession through the town