News archive 2019

Yorkshire among top for jobs growth January 29, 2019

Seven Yorkshire towns and cities are among the top ten for private sector jobs growth, according to the Cities Outlook 2019 report just published, but some of those same areas are among the hardest hit by austerity cuts in local government spending.

The study was carried out by leading think-tank on cities, Centre for Cities, which compares Britain's 63 largest cities and city-sized towns. In Yorkshire that includes Barnsley, Bradford, Doncaster, Huddersfield, Hull, Leeds, Middlesbrough, Sheffield, Wakefield and York.

This year's report stresses the importance commuting links play in the country's best performing cities but points to cities in the north of England having been hardest hit by Government austerity measures which have particularly hit local government spending.

Barnsley - 40.4% cut in local government spending The study appears to show that in Yorkshire it is cities and city-sized towns near to the largest cities that have been hit greatest by the spending cuts, notably Barnsley in South Yorkshire with a massive 40.4% cut in public expenditure over the last 10 years, Doncaster (30.6%), Wakefield (30.1%) and Huddersfield (23%). Hull (23.1%) has also seen a large cut in spending. York has had the smallest spending cut at 10.4%, closely followed by Leeds which cut its spending by just 12.2%, both less than the 14.3% national average. Sheffield with its 22.4% cut also fared much better than the two other South Yorkshire places studied.

Despite the falling investment, Yorkshire put itself in seven of the top 10 places for jobs growth in the private sector between 2016 and 2017, according to the study. The top ten in Britain are:

Middlesbrough - high private sector jobs growth in high unemployment area  1 Northampton
 2 Middlesbrough
 3 Cambridge
 4 Doncaster
 5 Hull
 6 Newcastle
 7 Bradford
 8 Leeds
 9 Huddersfield
10 York

Some of those cities and towns were nevertheless suffering from the lowest employment rates in the same period, particularly Bradford (with a 58th out of 63 placing for employment), and Middlesbrough (59th). Based on slightly more recent Jobseekers allowance claimant figures, the bottom 10 with most claimants included Doncaster (54th), Middlesbrough (55th) and Hull (56th) while in the least claimants top 10 York (6th) is the only Yorkshire place to feature.

Some of these Yorkshire towns and cities also fell into the bottom 10 for weekly earnings: Doncaster (58th out of 63), York (59th) and Huddersfield (60th).

The study also looks at housing and Barnsley in South Yorkshire is at the top of the national list and the only place with house price growth above 8%. Its South Yorkshire neighbour Sheffield in 6th place with 5.6% is the only other Yorkshire city in the top 10, while Doncaster, South Yorkshire, just over 20 miles from Sheffield, falls into the bottom 10 with a 0.1% fall in prices. Bradford, West Yorkshire, was also in the bottom 10 with a 0.3% fall.

Hull - low wages caused low affordability for £115,800 homes Despite the rises and falls in house prices in the period, both Doncaster and Barnsley came together in the bottom 10 for house affordability compared with earnings. They had average house prices of £139,700 and £141,400 respectively. Only Hull, in 61st place, with average house prices of £115,800, was worse for affordability compared with earnings.

Full details of the Cities Outlook 2019 report can be found at the  Centre for Cities website.


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