A BARNSLEY Council programme has helped hundreds of people across the centre of town find work and develop life skills.

Through the Community Boost project, the council has been working with local people and businesses in Kingstone, Worsbrough, Stairfoot, Dodworth and Central wards to boost the growth of good employment.

A total of nine new businesses have been created and more than 500 people have been supported with their life skills.

Coun Chris Lamb, deputy leader of the council, said: “We’re so proud of the Community Boost programme and the impact the work of the council and a wide range of partner organisations has achieved.

“We believe in the possibilities of Barnsley and we’re looking to the future with excitement and optimism, and with this programme we wanted to try something a little different.

“We’ve targeted local residents and local businesses at the same time to boost local business growth, boost people’s chances of getting back into work, and in some cases simply boost people’s confidence so they can play a more active role in their community.

“We’ve learned a lot through this work in the Central area of Barnsley.

“Now we want to build on this to help boost communities right across our borough as we help build a healthy, growing, learning and more sustainable Barnsley.”