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Parents pay £18,000 extra to live in school catchment area

Over 10 per cent of families in Wales have bought or rented a new property to get their children into their desired school.

Credit: PA

Research by Santander has highlighted how parents are willing to pay a premium of up to 18 per cent to get into the right catchment area, which works out at just over £17,500 at current average house prices in Wales.

The sacrifices go far beyond higher prices, with almost a third of those surveyed having changed jobs as a result of the move.

With competition for school places fiercer than ever, parents are making significant financial and lifestyle sacrifices to be within the catchment area of desirable schools.

All buyers will have a wish list of what they want their new home to have and being within a certain school catchment is increasingly common amongst young families - but can often come at a cost. Many of these sought-after areas command significant premiums.

– Miguel Sard, Santander

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Asking prices rise in Wales bucking UK trend

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House sellers' asking prices edged up slightly in Wales in August, a time traditionally when buyers were able to snap up a property at a bargain price over the summer holidays.

They rose by 0.2% according to property website Rightmove. It means the average price is £177,709.

Across the Wales and England a 0.8% or £2,258 month-on-month price fall took the average asking price to £292,284.

The underlying shortage of property coming to market compared to buyer demand has helped to deliver the strongest August price performance since before the credit crunch.

Buyers can normally pick up some bargains in August as sellers who are marketing their homes when they should be holidaying often have a pressing need to sell and mark their prices down pretty aggressively.

– Miles Shipside Director, Rightmove

70 jobs with biotech firm's HQ in Swansea

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An American biotech firm is setting up its European headquarters in the Swansea area creating 70 jobs.

Accelovance Inc., a clinical research organisation, has had help from the Welsh Government.

Wales is making a name for itself as a great location for businesses in the life sciences sector and gaining a reputation as a UK hotspot for pharmaceutical services. Accelovance is a most welcome addition to the sector and its presence will enhance our reputation in this particular field.

– Edwina Hart AM, Economy Minister

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Welsh farmers to stop selling lamb in protest

Sheep farmers from around Wales have vowed to stop selling their lamb this week in protest at the low prices they say they're being made to accept by supermarkets.

Credit: ITV Wales News

Farmers claim the price paid to farmers for their lambs has fallen by 30% in the last year but supermarkets have not passed on the savings to their customers.

They've taken to Twitter to help rally support for their campaign, which runs until Friday.

Farming unions are not involved in the protest. The British retail Consortium say Welsh farmers are supported.

As the biggest buyers of British lamb retailers we give huge support to Welsh farmers throughout the year.

Over 70 per cent of the lamb sold on supermarket shelves is British and is clearly labelled as such, thereby making it very easy for customers to find it in store.

– A British Retail Consortium spokesperson

New homes registrations 'up on last year'

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An industry body says the number of new homes being registered in Wales has risen by over a third in the last three months compared to 2014.

The National House Building Council says they are up by 37%. The figures are taken from builders who are responsible for around 8 out of 10 of homes constructed in the UK.

Overnight trips 'up on last year', tourism figures show

More visitors are coming to Wales and, per person, they are spending more than last year.

That is according to the second annual report on tourism.

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During the first quarter of 2015 the total volume of overnight trips to Wales was 1.62 million That's up by 7 per cent up in comparison with the first three months of 2014.

In January-April 2015, average spend per day trip in Wales was higher than the average in the first four months of 2014.

In 2015, 46 cruise ships are scheduled to visit Wales – a 94% increase year on year, with 22,500 passengers and an economic impact of £2.9 million.

Tourism in Wales is in a strong position. Two years into the ambitious tourism strategy, ‘Partnership for Growth’ we are seeing that public sector leadership and support, driven by private-sector investment and innovation, is helping to put Wales ahead of the competition.

– Ken Skates AM, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism
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