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Rossendale boss struggles to recruit workers
JOBS are going begging in Rossendale because so many workers prefer to travel outside the borough to work.
That’s the claim of East Lancashire businessman Martin Lewis, managing director at Bacup-based Beta Group.
He claims he is struggling to fill five vacancies at the manufacturing and maintenance firm in Underbank Mill, Burnley Road, despite appeals across Lancashire and Greater Manchester.
He said: “We are a succ-essful company with busy order books and plans for continued growth in our 25th anniversary year.
“However, no matter how hard we try we can’t seem to find the people with the skills we need.”
“We employ more than 50 people, many from the Rossendale area, but response to our advertisements has been disappointing.”
He discussed the issue with the East Lancs Chamber of Commerce’s new Rossendale Business Group, and hopes employers can work together to address the issue.
Mr Lewis said a survey conducted by the group found that despite the lack of a rail link, 27per cent of people in Rossendale travel to Greater Manchester to work.
This compared with just four per cent from Burnley, and seven per cent from Blackburn.
Mr Lewis said business leaders would be talking to the education sector to ensure school leavers were aware of the careers avail-able locally.
He added: “I am also delighted to see Rossendale Council supporting the business community by attending the business leaders’ meetings.”
Mike Damms, East Lancs Chamber of Commerce chief executive, said: “There is a distinct culture of trav-elling to work that is stronger in Rossendale.
“It’s the allure of a big economy like Manchester’s, but it’s also, in part, a lack of appreciation of local opport-unities.”
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