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Council Leader Speaks Out On 25,000 Jobs Shortfall

Friday March 15 2013


Steve Houghton Steve Houghton


THE leader of Barnsley Council has refuted claims the local authority has been 'lax' in addressing a 25,000 jobs shortfall in the town.

Cllr Steve Houghton spoke out at a council meeting when opposition Cllr Phil Birkinshaw commented on council watchdog findings that Barnsley had 25,000 fewer jobs compared to the average for the rest of Yorkshire.

Mr Houghton said the shortfall wasn't a reflection on the performance of the council.

"I have to refute that. It was a reflection of the scale of dependency in Barnsley on the mining industry, and the catastrophic effect that had on the economy overall," he said.

"People must remember we lost about 30,000 mining jobs and the economists tell us we lost another 30,000 other jobs at the same time which were related to the mining industry," he added. "No other town or borough in country went through that."

Neighbouring towns and cities also suffered from the collapse, but unlike Barnsley, they had alternative industries such as steel and engineering companies which could grow.

"I am pleased to say, despite that, the fact there are more jobs in Grimethorpe now than when the pits were open is testimony to the hard work done,'' said Mr Houghton.

He said the council would continue to focus on economic growth despite a further £16.5 million in cuts coming next year - and focus on getting people into jobs and back into work.

"I do not want people to be fooled that somehow Barnsley as a council has been lacking over the years," he added.

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Reply Posted by observer on Friday March 15 2013 at 11:46
i think mr phil birkinshaw has a point. mr houghton says there are more jobs in grimethorpe than at any other time. ok. at a company called symphony, there are 84 per cent of european personal employed there. this is a fact. at asos this is a larger per cent. also at asos. i understand this company take on hundreds of ethinics and are paid £300 by the government for each employee. after a few weeks asos then make the hundreds unemployed, or use "messing people about tactics" in this i mean they send people home earlier than the shift finishes, and the next day via txt inform them there is no work etc. at the same time they take on hundreds more, and take another £300 from the government for each of these too. are the council of barnsley aware of this?. is the government of having money heamorraging from our sytems during "austerity" times?..please councillors. have a look into this. make jobs for local people, in this i dont mean polish or others which live local.

Reply Posted by Grim on Friday March 15 2013 at 18:23
Have you heard yourself? Ethnics? Really?
Yes there are problems with these companies but your outdated racist rants not untypical of Barnsley folk are a huge reason why no firms want to invest in this back water.
Plus if the people got out of bed, turned up for work on time and grafted instead of having crap attitudes then .........

Reply Posted by stevo on Friday March 15 2013 at 19:06
Grim, you sir, are complete and utter buffoon.

Most of the incumbent "financial" migrant populous are white european who are exactly the same as us apart from the fact they speak a different language.

Therefore,when talking of said eastern european "financial" migrants how could this possibly deemed to be racist?

It is politically correct idiots like you and gutter tabloids that whip up mass hysteria regarding eastern european finiancial migrants that make it a race issue.

They also do it themselves when you tell them something they dont want to hear,ooh thats racist,absolute bollo**s!

I work with some poles and for the best part the majority are hardworking kids,some are not,some are down right rude and aloof.

They do not and will not integrate,all they interested in is earning money and sending it back to their families back home.

Thats all it boils down to MONEY.

Reply Posted by Fred on Sunday March 17 2013 at 13:13
Grim you are correct sir. Most people in Barnsley don't have any work ethics, why bother when you can sponge off the rest of us tax payers!!

Reply Posted by sarah on Friday March 15 2013 at 11:55
the majority of people working at asos and symphony wether poles or not live in doncaster or sheffield. I live close to goldthorpe train station and bypass and see these people walking and driving past my house so hardly any of these jobs have gone to local people so barnsley council should not be saying they have created local jobs because they havent.

Reply Posted by observer on Friday March 15 2013 at 12:15
you are right to a point sarah. but trust me there are a lot in grimethorpe. the agency which was flame. took peopl from poland, had a house which the employee had to take along with the job at symphony. its like a package. there are also housing issues too. if the polish take them, how likely are local people have that option?. i know there are employees from these companies at goldthorpe and the other places you mentioned. as there are in darfield. some would argue that these people will walk to the end of the earth for work. but is this right?. people should also have a social life. work to live. noyt live to work.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Friday March 15 2013 at 12:35
It's exactly comments like these above that make me shake my head. More than 84% of employees at ASOS are of East European origin? So assumming ASOS employs around 1000 people which is probably on the low side, there are at least 850 East Europeans at ASOS alone??? Some people believe anything but then again we are near the bottom when it comes to education standards.

Reply Posted by Grim on Friday March 15 2013 at 18:24
@ Hoyland Red - you are so right.

Reply Posted by observer on Friday March 15 2013 at 12:48
hoyland red. i said that this number was at symphony. i know a lot of ppl who work at asos. i have been informed by the trade union that the h.r dept at symphony told them without shame. 84 per cent of the workforce are of our counterparts. whywould you shake your head. arent you in agreement of looking after the british people who are actually british. you probably shake your head becaus you are one of these do-gooders. the country is almost on its knees.."so they say" so why not look after our own. why is it such a problem. why give what we have got to foreigners. why dont we give to our own.and please dont insult my intelligence, or others just because you probably dont like to hear the truth. i suggest you wake up hoyland red.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Friday March 15 2013 at 13:08
What you said is " at ASOS this is a larger percent" read your post. To be honest I'm after the best person for the job - gets the job. Much like it would be if I decided that I wanted to apply for a job in France, Spain, Germany etc. If these people are prepared to travel to find work, good on them because there are many that are born, bred and still living within this borough that are utter wastes of space and my tax. Open your mind - it's a big world.

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Friday March 15 2013 at 14:41
You need to look at the quality of jobs as well, Miners were skilled workers in permanent secure jobs (before they shut the pits) contributing to the economy,
Asos employs cheap high turnover staff, this is not present in the figures, Asos is where it is for a reason and the only reason is the cheap labour market. I haven't heard one good thing from anyone working at that place.

Steve Houghton and his cronies are a disgrace, they are reward themselves for failiure and cling on to their jobs with their grubby little mitts knowing full well when retirement comes they can leave town they ruinied whilst being comfortable for the rest of their days. It's time we had a change and made people work for their votes.

Reply Posted by observer on Friday March 15 2013 at 15:22
well said guesty. hoyland red. my mind is fully open. i am fully aware of whats going on around me. clearly you are not and have chosen to stick your head in the sand. if you would like things like. dialect, tradition. heritage, etc etc. to disappear completely. you carry on with the mind thought you are in. if you are in favour of living to work. and not working to live. then carry on with that too. if you cant see things happening, maybe you ought to go to specsavers.you can go on bleating about what you do and dont pay in taxes. but do governments ever tell us well done you have paid a lot of taxes and we are in the black because of high taxation?..of course not. i find it very sad hoyland red that you and other do gooders view things this way. maybe if you lived long enough to see whats going to happen, hopefully you will have regrets.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Friday March 15 2013 at 20:26
Dialect, tradition, heritage is that what really scares you about the future? I ask my kids to speak clearly so that when they get older in a global world they'll not have to repeat themselves several times to someone not born within 10 miles of Barnsley Town Hall. I am proud of where I live and try to instill this in my children but there are people in Barnsley hanging on to the past and it's these people holding back the town. Have a look in the mirror. I do like the phrase do gooders, as I would rather be seen to be doing good or at least trying rather than being insular.

Reply Posted by stevo on Saturday March 16 2013 at 04:18
To quote a great song " the past is the present and the future is mine".
Believe it or not i actually agree with you Hoyland Red,well kind of...
I take it with your comment about "people in Barnsley hanging onto the past" is aimed at the mining industry?
The same mining industry and same trade unionists that dared to take on Thatcher and her cronies?
I was very fortunate to have not been old enough to go down the pit and i understand exactly what you are saying,yes the pits are long gone,once tight knit communities have been lost forever (Grimethorpe being a classic example) ,but,to appreciate the Barnsley working mans heritage you have to take a wider view.
How many other employers have we lost over the last 20 odd years?
Heres a few, SR Gent, Parkside (BP) Shaw carpets,slazengers,perfecta beds,to name but a few.
Most were reasonably well paid skilled jobs and all are gone.
Where have the people that were made redundant from these places gone to work?
Have they found similar skilled jobs in our town?

What employers have come into our town?

The majority are call centres paying meagre salaries is the answer,or employers such as Asos who relocated from Hertfordshire to "take advantage" of the people in our area which,unfortunately has higher than the national average unemployment figures.
Good news for the town,but not good,well paid jobs.
You also have to look at the jobs on offer,i dare say 70% are through employment agencies,which since their inception a few years ago, have effectively "casualised" the labour market.
A day here,a day there,how can anyone survive working one or two days a week?

The only job "growth" we have seen is unskilled, call centre or casual work via employment agencies.

I have often been accused of slagging Asos,yes tis true.
They relocated to Barnsley as they knew full well they could get away with paying the minimum wage or not much more and if the local populous are uninterested in taking these jobs,again,they know full well that there are "hoardes" of eastern europeans that will work for the minimum wage all day long.
They have also benefited from EU grants for relocating to our town.
One has to ask,at what price Profit?

As for me,i am a proud Barnsley man,this does not mean i am proud of Barnsley.
Walk through the town centre any afternoon and you will get my drift.

Reply Posted by Sharon on Monday March 18 2013 at 14:41
I'll vote for you stevo.

Reply Posted by Charles on Friday March 15 2013 at 15:29
I fully agree with the comments of Guesty Mcguest (above)

Without doubt, Mr Houghton and barnsley council have failed over many, many years to bring new business of any significance to Barnsley. The only businesses which Mr Houghton and his colleagues have persuaded to move here are only able to offer low rates of pay/minimum wage type jobs. What we need are 'proper' jobs paying 'proper' wages and salaries. Clearly Barnsley council have failed (does it really suprise you?) to deliver the required jobs. It is also of great concern that the council think that their efforts have been successful!!!! How deluded can they be?

I also wonder how many council employees are 'working' in industrial development and at what cost to council tax payers. Whatever the cost, I know that we are not getting value for money.

Reply Posted by sarah on Friday March 15 2013 at 17:34
odserver you are right about the housing situation.my other half is a hgv driver for a major company in doncaster and we know there are agencies that bring the polish over on a 6mnth turnover give them housing they take the rent out of their wages and every 6mnths they go home another lot come and same again. same with latvians he works with.

Reply Posted by lyndon on Friday March 15 2013 at 20:44
Great post stevo absolutely spot on

Reply Posted by observer on Friday March 15 2013 at 20:54
hoyland red. you are clearly a snob. yes it scares me to lose all these things. clearly you are not proud to come from barnsley. if you were, you would encourage you obviously conservative kids to speak the tone wher you come from. thank you sarah and guesty. you are clearly proper people from barnsley. and wish out heritage and dialect to continue. and why not hoyland red?...are you saying that people from barnsley, who speak proper barnsley accent faqil in a chance to further or better themselves?..clearly you do. its a shame that people feel like this. my opinion is you should be ashamed of yourselves. respect wher eyou came from and be proud of it too.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Friday March 15 2013 at 21:23
Read my post again. By definition Heritage will always be there, Barnsleys traditions I'm also comfortable with, so I'm not sure where you're going on that one. I ask my kids to have an open mind about many things including travelling the world and understanding people who have different views to our own. Would you really encourage your kids to speak with a broad yorkshire accent? are you saying it improves them and makes them ready for the outside world or would you rather teach them to be able to adapt in certain situations. I am proud to come from Barnsley but at times I do despair that some people are still living in the 70's.

Reply Posted by observer on Friday March 15 2013 at 20:57
ha haaa. charles. look no further. hoyland red is probably one of the ones you mentioned.

Reply Posted by Tony on Saturday March 16 2013 at 16:43
I'd like to know how many volunteers are currently 'working' for the council. I hope they are being noted and, if/when council jobs do come back they are first in line.

Reply Posted by observer on Sunday March 17 2013 at 09:16
ok. this is my last post on this. hoyland red has clearly exposed himself as being a tory. no i didnt work down the pit. no i have nothing to do with the trade unions that took on the thatcher govt. yes i would encourage my kid\s to speak in the barnsley accent...because i am proud of it clearly you beleive that people do not have a chance in the open world having this accent. isnt this some kind of victimisation? stevo made some good points. being diplomatic, but seeing different perspectives. grim made some good points. sarah didnt say much. you see, you dont need to. at one point when smething wasnt right....all you needed to say was. its not reyt. and everyone knew full well what everything meant, during discussions of anything. there didnt need to be need to explain...its not reyt was enough. hoyland red, you also say tht you were lucky enough not to have been old enough to have been involved in the strikes and the mining things that went off. well let me tell you something, its in your blood. its in your community. and everything around you. some of the things you have put on here. there is a word to describe you. shame.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Monday March 18 2013 at 11:58
Ooooooh there's so much wrong in this post I don't know where to begin, but as you say Observer you've finished on this subject so I'll not bore you with anymore - everyone is entitled to their own opinion - my opinion is that the education system in Barnsley has, in the past let down a lot people and I include parental education in that.

Reply Posted by stevo on Monday March 18 2013 at 18:29
Hoyland Red,you are right again and i agree with you!
You are going to have to stop this it clearly is not tennis!
However,you have to look back over the last century and think about education and peoples attitudes to work and our proud industrial heritage.
Some 50,40,even thirty years ago many men didnt have any educational aspirations as they knew full well that they could walk to the end of their street and get a job down the pit or the glassworks.
Have you ever seens a miners handwriting?
In fact i work with an ex miner who is tipping 60 and he still struggles to read and write,not that i am knocking him,i'm merely trying to point out that people of a certain age didnt want to learn at school as they could go straight to the pit for a job.
Again, just to reiterate, i was too young to go down the pit even though i was labelled "pit fodder" by my uncles (The sods!).
I can see where you are coming from but certain things are ingrained into local society,i too was one of the "i cant be bothered at school brigade" and spent most of my time during my school years being the "class clown",something which my mother constantly reminds me about!
Not that i wanted to be the "class clown",ok i admit i enjoyed the attention and dare i say it,especially the attention from the "ladies".
My parents (especially my mother) tried desperately to get me to learn at school,but i was happy being the "class clown" I also knew that my dad could get me on at the local Factory too,so i never bothered.
Tis only in later life that one realises that one should have tried harder at school,especially when it comes to maths!
Believe it or not i still struggle with subtraction and without a calculator i would be in serious trouble!
A few years ago i did an adult literacy and numeracy course at Northern College and struggled! i passed it though.

Many of my classmates were exactly the same,they couldnt be bothered as at the time there were plenty of jobs available.

Things have changed,society has changed,the jobs market in Barnsley has changed beyond belief,gone are the days where one could walk to the end of the street to his/her place of work.

I'm going to get stoned to death for this but,one the government decided that parents could choose which schools their kids could go to also had a massive bearing on the learning of their children and others.
If one came from a former pit village to say,Cawthorne junior school then standards are going to slip arent they?
Parents have also changed too,if i was doing something wrong then i got a clip,parents these days give their kids a hug and tell them they are naughty.
Kids dont respect their elders like they used to do even when i was a kid,we also learned to respect our teachers or else we got the cane.

I would like to think their are a lot of kids in Barnsley with great educational and further learning aspirations.

However,when kids of a young impressionable age see generations of their families churning kids out and getting free council houses and benefits ( a large percentage of which come from my lazy family) what do they actually aspire to? They learn that society will give them a house and benefits for life dont they!

Saw this one a windscreen sticker the other day and thought how apt:

"A Kid is For Life Not for Benefits!"

Reply Posted by sarah on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 10:30
stevo my partner and I have 4 children all ours i hasten to add one is due to leave school this time round and she is going to be a G.P when she qualifies she has worked hard at school and deserves to become what she wants. Our next is 15 and wants to become a train driver maybe thats lower class to many but he will travel out of this town and get a good wage. All 4 get a clip when they need one and praise where its due they know right from wrong i hope and i dont mind the neighbours telling them off if theyre up to no good.People always assume that as we have a large family we are on benefits and have a council house when in fact its the exact opposite.They dont go to the local comp as its not very good i suppose what im babbling on about is there are some families left in barnsley that do want to do the best they can.Observer i can promise you its very rare i say little as most of my friends will tell you haha!.Hoyland red my partner talks tarn and owns his own successful business so dont pull folk darn for being proper not pretentious.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 12:27
How these posts got to be a debate about accents is beyond me as my original post was more about the figures being bandered around about how many east europeans 'according to Observer' were working at either Symphony or ASOS and in my opinion that was scaremongering - However, seen as you've prolonged the debate about 'talking tarn' would you suggest that your daughter is likely to be a successful GP with a broad Yorkshire accent or do you think that after studying at the requisite Universities and Colleges that her accent will change. I am not against the Barnsley accent but as I put in a previous post an ability for our and the next generation to change to circumstance is required and that requires education both at home and at school. As I've put before some people are not prepared to open their mind to the modern world.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 14:09
Sarah,Good for you! Being a train driver is hardly lower class! It a a very demanding job and the salary is extremely good.
Theres nowt wrong wi talkin tarn either,i am as common as muck and as rough as owt ,always have been and always will be,but there are certain situations when one "has" to alter ones accent as sometimes the person that one is talking to cannot understand a bloody word one is saying!
And believe me i write much better than i talk!

Reply Posted by stevo on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 14:24
Hoyland red,i dont know the figures for symphony but do know there are a large proportion of eastern europeans possibly as many as 20% @ ARSOS.
Fosters bakery - 30%
Thornhill heat exchangers - 15-20%
L&P Springs 2%
To name but a few.
The Barnsley accent is truly unique,my mother comes out with some stuff i have never heard of as did my grandmother.
I think my favourite is mindsthi (mind you - to all the non tyke readers)
People adapt their "accent" according to differing situations,for example i would never walk into my doctors and say " Hey up ar tha!"
But lets get one thing absolutely straight,straight away,there are no posh people in our town,plenty of "ten bob millionaires" though.

Reply Posted by sarah on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 12:39
observer certainly isnt scaremongering about how many poles and latvians and such are working in barnsleys places of work i had to leave perkins chilled foods due to agencies only sending these people in. Im pretty sure my daughter will change her accent when she goes to uni as do many and its not down to accent wether or not shes going to be successful im sure no one would tell lenny henry he cant have a job due to him being a brummie. To be honest im hoping at least 2 out of 4 will leave england altogether their dad has family in poland due to his father being polish and relatives in aussie which i hope will help them move over there as this country has gone to the dogs.

Reply Posted by Hoyland Red on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 12:44
You can see the irony in your post can't you.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 14:40
Sarah, again i agree with you,the agencies send eastern europeans to workplaces as they know the majority of them will work hard,turn up on time and not cause them any grief.
The also know its easy money for them (the agency) and the person who works at the agency who sends them to said employer recieves a nice fat commission for sending said eastern european to said workplace.
As i have said before i work with some polish lads and for the most part they are hardworking,some have very little english though and this does cause problems with other workers,but as i have mentioned this up the page,they do not integrate,do not want to integrate and are only interested in working to send money back home to their relatives.
Again,thats it all boils down to MONEY.
How can our 16-25 year olds possibly wish to "compete" against the migrants from eastern europe.
A few years back in was working for an agency (no names) and the agency itself was owned by a polish guy who would only send Poles to my then place of work until the union put a stop to it.
The only real winners in the employing of eastern europeans are the employment agencies themselves.
The government keep banging on about how good the employing of eastern europeans is good for our economy,but we all know this is twaddle.
A guy who i work with recently sent his full salary back to his family in Lodz (pronounced wooj) as they were "skint" how can this be good for our economy?
The proliferation of the eastern european financial migrants has only driven down wages and living standards.

Reply Posted by sarah on Tuesday March 19 2013 at 12:48
yep!

Reply Posted by Jerry Fairey on Wednesday April 3 2013 at 04:52

You made some decent points there. I looked on the net for more info about the issue and found most individuals will go along with your views on this web site.

Reply Posted by Jabe on Tuesday June 18 2013 at 18:18
Hoyland Red. I admire your comment and agree with u 100%.
Try typing the following words on google and let google suggest the rest.
BARNSLEY MOST....... The first suggestion comes up as RACIST TOWN.
If u click it u will see clearly there are several sites and post regarding these issues.
If every Barnsley born and bred waste of space worked hard as the Poles and other nationals do then there would be no space for jobs for anyone else right?
This is the comment by Labour MP.
My experience of Barnsley is that it is actually the most hospitable place I have ever been to”
End Quote
Dan Jarvis......
anyone WHO HAS ANYTHING against beliefs, religion and culture shall never
live happy and will only burn themselves inside when they see a foreigner driving a BMW whilst they are queuing up at the job centre.