Live updates

Employers compete as jobs market improves

There were plenty of vacancies at this job fair in Bristol Credit: ITV News

Some employers have told ITV News they're fighting to compete for the highest calibre candidates as the job market in the West continues to improve.

The latest unemployment figures are due out later with some companies at this jobs fair in Bristol struggling to fill some vacancies.

The NHS and police were among employers offering jobs to some of the 800 visitors to The Galleries shopping centre yesterday.

Hospitality care, the hospital sector - there are massive shortages. Got two hospitals here today very keen to get temporary staff in and then convert them to full time staff later on.

– Chris Mitchell, Bristol City Council

Life after redundancy: the Swindon man making it as an artist

The first jobs figures since the election have been released today showing the South West has the highest employment rate in the country.

One man who has managed to get back into work is Nathan Pegler from Swindon. He was made redundant by Honda and used the opportunity to start up his own business as an artist:

Advertisement

Unemployment falls in the South West

3000 more people are in work since December 2014 Credit: PA

The total number of unemployed people in the South West has fallen by 3000 for the first three months of 2015.

119,000 people are currently out of work in the region, 4.3% of the total population, according to the ONS.

Nationally, unemployment is at a seven-year low of 1.83 million, down 35,000 from the previous quarter.

South West bucks national trend as unemployment figures rise

The South West was the only region to see a rise in unemployment Credit: PA

The number of people out of work in the South West has risen in the last quarter - the only region to see a rise in Great Britain.

The South West has bucked the national trend, with the figures revealing unemployment has gone up by 7,000 to 126,000 in the three months to Feb 2015 - an increase of 4.6%.

But, despite the numbers, our region continues to have one of the highest employment rates with 76.8% in work.

More than a third are paid less than the living wage

More than 1 in 3 people in the region earn less than a living wage Credit: PA

Kingswood in South Gloucestershire has the highest number of people earning below the living wage in the South West.

More than half of its population are paid less than the amount deemed necessary to live on - which is currently set at £7.85 an hour.

According to the Trades Union Congress, more than a third of jobs in the region pay a lower wage than this.

Advertisement

Wiltshire man is named Apprentice of the Year

Steven Davey has been named Apprentice of the Year Credit: Federation of Master Builders

Steven Davey from Staverton in Wiltshire has won the title of Apprentice of the Year.

He received the award - and a cheque for £1,000 - at the Federation of Master Builders Awards in London yesterday. The 25-year-old carpentry apprentice studied at Swindon College and now works for Chippenham-based Stonewood Builders.

The South West has the lowest unemployment rate of anywhere in the country

The South West has the lowest unemployment rate of anywhere in the country, new figures show.

According to The Office for National Statistics, the number of people without jobs went down by seven thousand between October and December. A total of 122 thousand people were out of work in the South West - a rate of 4.5 percent.

The South West has got the lowest unemployment rate of anywhere in the country. Unemployment's gone down on the year by 50,000 and long term unemployment, people who've gone on the work programme there, 20,000 fewer since June 2011, so again, it really is seeing transformational change in that area.

– Esther McVey, Employment Minister

See the full interview with Ester McVey below:

Could 2019 be the end for building in the South West?

Recruitment is a challenge for the majority of surveyors

A skills shortage in the construction sector could threaten building projects in the South West by 2019.

New research reveals more than 90% of surveyors said that a lack of qualified candidates meant they had problems recruiting.

Three in five firms also said they had to turn down work.

Nick Clegg announces £18m investment in the West

Nick Clegg was in Bristol this morning Credit: ITV News

The Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, was in Bristol this morning announcing an £18 million investment in the West.

The money will go into creating 6000 new jobs and more than 11,000 new homes:

What for? To help support centres like this, to get more jobs and entrepreneurs and businesses going, to redevelop the Crow Lane roundabout, to invest in the local robotics innovation centre in Bristol.

– Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister
Load more updates