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Taunton Deane Borough Council to move to County Hall

Taunton Deane Borough Council has finally voted to move to Somerset County Hall, one month after a similar proposal was narrowly rejected.

Brick sign
A sign outside the Council's current premises. Credit: ITV News

The council says it costs £650,000 a year to occupy the ageing Deane House off Station Road in Taunton. Its report also found that creating a public sector 'one-stop-shop' together with the County Council would make life easier for service users.

Discussions will now start with the County Council about how best to facilitate the move.

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National

Alexander: Economic recovery is gaining momentum

Figures showing a fall in unemployment shows Britain's economic recovery is "continuing to gain momentum", the Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said.

PA Wire
Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander. Credit: PA Wire

"With record numbers in work and the claimant count falling, these figures show that our economic recovery is continuing to gain momentum," Mr Alexander said.

"It's further proof that our Liberal Democrat tax cuts for working people, support for apprenticeships and our determination to tackle the deficit fairly are working - and so is the country.

"There is still a long way to go, but this is solid progress and the significant fall in youth employment is particularly encouraging and welcome."

West Country (W)

Unemployment rises to 145,000 in South West

The number of people out of work in the South West has risen by 10 thousand to 145,000. It is the only region in the country that has seen an increase.

Nationally, unemployment has continued to fall, while the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance is on course to dip below a million for the first time in six years.

The jobless total was 2.08 million in the quarter to June, down by 132,000 on January to March and the lowest since the end of 2009, giving an unemployment rate of 6.4%.

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Your views on family debt

We asked you for your comments on reports that many families are struggling to cope with rising levels of debt. Here are some of the views posted on our Facebook page.

"It started with struggling to buy treats days out new clothes etc. Now its struggling to pay the bills and rent each week. Being a working single mum aint all its cracked up to be. Times are tough" - Miranda Heath

"I found it difficult to begin with but with clever management i have been able to treat myself and daughter weekly. I keep a bill account and a shopping account. The bill account gets topped up weekly. I too am also a working single mum. (currently on maternity)." - Claire Louise

"A third of families borrow to buy essentials for children, the other 2 thirds sponge off the state" - Nigel Topp

Where to go for debt advice

Today we are looking in to a new report which suggests that more than 160,000 children across the west country are living in families with debt problems.

Research out today shows more than 1 in 10 families in the region are failing to keep up with household bills and loan repayments.

Below are some useful links to agencies which specialise in helping people who have financial problems.

Step Change: http://www.stepchange.org/

0800 138 1111 Step Change offer a free online advice tool, Debt Remedy, where you can enter your debt details and receive advice in 20 minutes.

My Money Steps: https://www.mymoneysteps.org/

0808 808 4000 My Money Steps is an online service from National Debtline, allowing you to get free online advice, and by phone.

Money Advice Service: https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en

0300 500 5000 Chat to their online team, or call for free, unbiased, independent advice.

Christians Against Poverty: https://www.capuk.org/

01274 760720 A charity set up in 1996, CAP provide money courses, debt help, and have centres set up all over the UK.

Citizens Advice Bureau: http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/

08444 111 444 Citizens Advice can provide online, telephone, and in-person support with branches located throughout the UK.

Third of families borrow to buy essentials for children

Third of families borrow to buy essentials for children
Third of families borrow to buy essentials for children Credit: ITV News

More than 160,000 children across the west country are living in families with debt problems. New research out today shows more than 1 in 10 families in the region are failing to keep up with household bills and loan repayments. It also shows that a third of families have had to borrow money in the last year to pay for essentials for their children. There are calls today for the government to offer parents more support.

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