UNEMPLOYMENT in the Vale of Glamorgan has fallen by six per cent when compared with this time last year.

Figures released by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) this Wednesday reveal that the total claimant count in the Vale fell from 1400 to 1310.

Each month the DWP releases figures for regions across the UK showing the change in the claimant count from this time last year to now.

From this time last year, youth unemployment in the Vale which covers those aged 18-24 has fallen by seven per cent from a claimant count of 360 to 335.

Over the past eight years, unemployment in the Vale has fallen by 68 per cent with youth unemployment down by 70 per cent.

Tim Lewis from the DWP said these figures show an “improving picture” over the last few years.

He said: “It is a real good picture and the fall of six per cent in the Vale is above the national average.

“This is very good news and shows a continuing positive trend.

“We want to put people in a good place to get into employment.”

He said the main thriving sectors in and around the Vale are the services and hospitality with good opportunities for everyone, including people in the Vale and others throughout south Wales.

He added: “We have tried to link up training with what we do in local offices.”

A five week hospitality and food hygiene course will begin at the end of February at the Barry Job Centre which will give participants a qualification in that industry.

Mr Lewis said they are always looking for what their customers need going forward.

Mr Lewis added: “Our advice would be for people to just come and talk to us. We have a lot to offer people if they are prepared to work with us.

“There are opportunities around. Don’t be afraid to ask. We are there to support people and we do it very effectively.”

Commenting on the latest labour market statistics, first minister of Wales Carwyn Jones said: “It is encouraging that our employment rate has risen over the past quarter, and economic inactivity in Wales has fallen.

“However, given the wider climate of economic uncertainty it is essential that we continue to do all we can to drive up employment levels and support Welsh companies to prosper and grow.”