Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Rochdale One of 'Worst for Jobs, Pay and Skills' ; Think-Tank Analysis Found One in Seven People Living in the 'Bottom Ten' Town Have No Qualifications.

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Rochdale One of 'Worst for Jobs, Pay and Skills' ; Think-Tank Analysis Found One in Seven People Living in the 'Bottom Ten' Town Have No Qualifications.

Article excerpt

ROCHDALE has been ranked among the worst places in the country for jobs, pay and skills - amid warnings the north-south divide is still getting bigger.

Think-tank Centre for Cities analysed the economies of Britain's 64 largest urban areas over the decade to 2014 to see how they have fared.

For every indicator, most of the top ten cities are in the south, while most of the bottom ten are in the north. Rochdale - which is classed as a city thanks to its population of more than 125,000 - is in the bottom ten on a string of measures, including wages, skill levels, job creation, new homes, employment rates and population growth.

According to the analysis, one in seven people in Rochdale had no qualifi-cations at all in 2013, compared to one in 20 in Brighton. Weekly earnings were Pounds 413 on average last year, compared to Pounds 676 in London.

While the number of jobs in Milton Keynes has leapt by 18.2pc in the last decade, in Rochdale they fell by 12.2pc, putting the borough second from bottom. It also had one of the lowest population growths, lowest proportion of people with degrees, lowest levels of employment and lowest proportion of new homes.

The town's MP Simon Danczuk has questioned the fairness of comparing Rochdale to large cities, while the council and Rochdale Development Agency say they have attracted huge investment since 2013/14. …

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