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20 January 2015, 09:27 | Updated: 20 January 2015, 09:28
Bournemouth and Portsmouth have been named among the best towns and cities in the country for jobs growth.
Roles increased by 15,500 in Bournemouth between 2004 and 2013, or 10%, putting it fifth in The Centre for Cities report, entitled ‘Outlook 2015’. An increase of 18,000, or 9.2%, in Portsmouth means the city is placed in sixth.
The report compared the performance of the UK’s 64 largest cities and towns from 2004-2013. During this period when the economy initially expanded, before falling into recession during the financial crisis, the research revealed a dramatically widening gap between Britain’s best and worst performing cities and towns. For every 12 net new jobs created between 2004 and 2013 in cities in the South of England, only one was created in cities throughout the rest of Great Britain.
Milton Keynes came in at number one, with London second.
You can find the report in full here: http://www.centreforcities.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/15-01-09-Cities-Outlook-2015.pdf
The Leader of Bournemouth Council, Councillor John Beesley, said:
“More jobs and growth in the local economy is welcome news. We have big ambitions for Bournemouth’s future and we strongly believe that we need to take the lead in building a better Bournemouth.
“Despite the considerable challenges of the recession we have been strategically investing in regeneration projects to attract inward investment, improving our transport network, supporting business start-ups and striving to retain graduate talent in the town to increase our skills base.
“As a Council we set out our aspirations for Bournemouth in the Town Centre Vision which has unlocked private sector investment in the area including the development of two Hilton Hotels and stimulated growth in the local economy. Over £150million of vision-related regeneration activity is already underway in the town. Much more is in the pipeline. Partnership and innovation, and above all an unwillingness to stand still, have been key to our success so far.”
Bournemouth achieved a top ten ranking for the highest number of businesses per 10,000 population in 2013. Other interesting findings include the news that there were 50.2 business start-ups per 10,000 population in 2013, which ranks Bournemouth 19th nationally. For digital connections Bournemouth ranks 5th nationally for its high availability of super fast broadband and businesses will also soon be benefitting from worldwide transport connections as Bournemouth International Airport opens up access to global trade routes via new direct flights to Europe’s fourth largest airport, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.
Leader of Portsmouth City Council, Cllr Donna Jones., said:
"This report shows that Portsmouth and its surrounding area are doing extraordinarily well, particularly given the tough conditions in recent times," she said. "It's a real tribute to the hard work and drive of local employers and their workers.
"This is a great place to do business and to find success. The growth is in part down to the area's push to support high-tech manufacturing and advanced engineering, particularly in the defence industries.
"Growth in these sectors is something the council is working hard to accelerate, along with other public and private sector organisations in the area.
"The new Centre for Maritime Intelligent Systems on Portsdown Hill, and the city's bid for a University Technical College, are both major steps to ensure continued growth."
The report defines Portsmouth as an area including Fareham, Gosport and Havant boroughs as well as the city itself.
It says private sector jobs in the area increase by 4,300, or 2.9%, between 2012 and 2013, putting Portsmouth 13th out of 63 other UK locations. It also says real wages increased by 4.4% between 2013 and 2014, putting Portsmouth in sixth place.