WORK and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith declared that he was ‘pleased’ with the roll-out of Universal Credit during a visit to Nelson yesterday.

The former Conservative leader was given a tour of the town’s Jobcentre, in Netherfield Road, to ask staff how his welfare reforms were taking shape.

He praised the centre’s staff and Pendle’s Tory MP, Andrew Stephenson, for their work in tackling unemployment in the borough.

Despite turning up around 70 minutes late having visited Morecambe earlier in the afternoon, Mr Duncan Smith said he was impressed with what he had seen.

Staff feedback on Universal Credit was mixed, with one employee highlighting ‘regular glitches’ in the system and ‘poor communication’, while others said it had benefitted unemployed residents.

Mr Duncan Smith said: “We are continuing to make new adjustments and that’s the whole point of Universal Credit.

“We said we would use the North West as a guide for how we would roll it out elsewhere. These people, these advisers, are the ones driving it and I’m pleased with what I’ve seen today.”

He added: “This is a small Jobcentre but a perfectly formed one. They are all doing a great job. The jobs revolution starts here.”

Universal Credit, a single monthly payment which merges together benefits and tax credits, was rolled out in East Lancashire in October last year. The reform, one of the Coalition’s flagship policies, has been criticised for being implemented too slowly.