The jobs boost comes as Staffordshire continues to see near full employment, with today’s unemployment claimant count figure for the county remaining at just 1.1 per cent – lower than both regional (2.4 per cent) and national (1.9 per cent) averages. There was a slight reduction in the number of Staffordshire claimants from the previous month (180 fewer people).
This week, Staffordshire County Council has begun the process of selling the final plot of land at Cannock’s Kingswood Lakeside business park, which is one of the area’s main employment sites. Already home to leading national businesses like Veolia, APC Overnight, HellermannTyton and First Choice, the site has attracted new development recently and will soon be fully occupied.
Both HellermannTyton and catering equipment supplier First Choice started operations at Kingswood Lakeside over the last eight months. New development is now taking place on two other plots. Two units are being built by Opus Land with the potential to create over 500 jobs, while Midlands-based developer Trebor will soon start work on a unit which could create 140 jobs. The final development is expected to create around 130 jobs.
Kingswood Lakeside was developed by Staffordshire County Council on a former opencast mining site. It is one of the county’s leading employment sites and lies next to junctionT7 of the M6 Toll Road and the A5.
Staffordshire County Council’s economic growth leader Mark Winnington said: “We’re now moving towards the sale of the last plot of land at Kingswood Lakeside which is a significant milestone for the site and means it will soon be fully occupied. Just taking the three new developments alone we will see the creation of nearly 800 jobs which is more good news for Staffordshire residents. Added with the hundreds already working on site and we will have one of the largest employment hubs in the county. The success of Kingswood Lakeside demonstrates why it is so important that we invest in business park development. The returns for us are not only long-term business investment and business rates, but employment for thousands and a better quality of life for Staffordshire people.”
The land sale is due to be finalised in the coming weeks.