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East of England sees ‘Brian Cox effect’ as science jobs soar

06:00 05 January 2016

Professor Brian Cox.

Professor Brian Cox.

The numbers employed in the East of England’s professional, scientific and technical industry soared last year, according to latest official figures.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) said the sector led the charge towards higher employment levels in the region, with 34,000 more posts created in the sector.

The figure represents a sizeable chunk of UK-wide growth in the science and tech industry, where 125,000 more jobs were created in 2015.

The region’s science sector already has a strong base due to the effects of Cambridge’s “Silicon Fen” and communication giant BT’s large research and development site at Adastral Park in Martlesham, near Ipswich, as well as Essex University’s science park at Colchester, all of which will have helped buoy the “Brian Cox” effect.

The phenomenon mirrored growth in London’s professional, scientific and technical sector, which also experienced the biggest employment boost in its region, with 41,000 jobs created.

This compares with the South-East, where construction saw the largest increase, and Yorkshire and the Humber where hospitality was the growth hotspot.

In the South West and North East, admin and support was the biggest growth area, while the East Midlands and West Midlands saw the biggest rise in their retail and construction sectors respectively.

Employment Minister and Witham MP Priti Patel said: “We’re ending 2015 on a real high. Employment is at a record high with 31.3million people now in work, while unemployment is at its lowest since 2008, and wages are continuing to grow.

“This is fantastic news — and by helping people into work it means more families, up and down Britain, are enjoying the security of a regular pay cheque and benefiting from our growing economy.

“And next year, hard-working people will benefit from more support, including the introduction of the National Living Wage and 30 hours of free childcare for working families.”

Employment across the UK has reached a record high, according to the DWP, with around 750,000 vacancies in the labour market at any one time.

In the construction sector, 111,000 more jobs were created in 2014, and regular pay went up by 6.3%, it said.

It predicts 55,000 skilled workers will be needed in the transport industry by 2020 and says jobs in the education sector increased by 46,000 in 2015. Hospitality also saw an 80,000 rise across the UK.

HOSPITALITY

The hospitality industry is on the up, with 80,000 more jobs than there were a year ago — and the Government is urging people not to dismiss the jobs as “just for teenagers and students”.

Employment Minister Priti Patel praised café, pub and hotel workers in a speech to the British Hospitality Association this year as the ‘best face of Britain’.

She said: “The hospitality industry provides huge opportunities for career progression. You could start off cleaning tables and end up running a chain of restaurants – the chances to learn and develop are unlimited.”

CONSTRUCTION

Builders and bricklayers, stand at the ready — there are a whopping 111,000 more jobs in construction than in 2014, and regular pay has also gone up 6.3%, more than any other sector.

So if you’re looking to build your career in 2016, have a look at the industry. The Government is ploughing billions into the National Infrastructure Pipeline and supporting the creation of three million apprenticeships, so there’s plenty of opportunity to get ahead.

PROFESSIONAL & SCIENTIFIC

Is it the Brian Cox effect? Jobs in the science and tech industry are up 125,000 in the past year, the largest annual rise of any industry!

So if you’ve got an investigative mind and want to find out more in jobs in this field, head to the National Careers Service website and search ‘science and research’ for more hints and tips on how to crack the sector.

ENTERTAINMENT

If you love hogging the mike at karaoke, or making people laugh down the pub, you could consider a job in the entertainment industry.

There are 21,000 more posts in the sector now than there were this time last year – and a series of new openings will help boost this figure in 2016. This includes the launch of a new £40 million Discover England fund to support tourism across the UK, which will lead to more job opportunities.

TRANSPORT

Britain is on the move — and with the biggest road improvement programme since the 1970s and the largest programme of rail investment since Victorian times, it means the number of jobs available has in the industry is also dramatically increasing. A whopping 55,000 skilled workers will be needed in the transport industry by 2020.

With construction starting on HS2 in the next two years, billions of pounds being pumped into improving transport links in the north as part of the government’s Northern Powerhouse, and the Government’s aim to create 30,000 apprenticeships in the rail and road sectors in the next five years, there’s great potential to speed up the career ladder.

EDUCATION

Thousands of people are choosing to help shape the minds of the next generation, and there’s lots of opportunities for a rewarding career within teaching.

Jobs in the education sector increased by 46,000 in 2015 — and aspiring teachers could receive a tax-free bursary or scholarship of up to £30k from the Government while you train.

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