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Latest website and industry news at a glance..
Budget 2013: 'UK government should build more homes'
Date: 03/11/2013

Boosting homebuilding and infrastructure spending should be the main goal of the forthcoming Budget, according to business lobby groups.

The CBI and the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) want tens of thousands of new homes to be built to create new jobs and provide affordable homes.

But they say that the government should stick to its plans to cut borrowing.

However, the BCC says that the government should borrow more if there is no growth within six months.

The BCC is advocating a range of measures, including the building of 100,000 new homes, which it says will cost almost £30bn over three years.

John Longworth, director general of the BCC, said: "If within the next six months there is no prospect of growth... you might have to consider actually borrowing more money but you should only do it to fund areas that the market would forgive."

Building confidence

The CBI says £2.2bn should be moved from current spending to "high-growth areas". Some of this money should be used to build 50,000 new affordable homes, which it says would create 75,000 jobs.

The group also wants more investment in roads and infrastructure and a cap on business rates.

The CBI said money could be found from savings within government departments as well as sales of land and property, and insisted there would be no need for further borrowing.

Tax incentives should be provided to encourage the refurbishment of existing properties, the CBI added.

CBI director general John Cridland told the BBC the plan would address a range of problems: "We need Housing Associations to be freed up going forward to build the affordable housing needed.

"If we want nurses and firemen to be able to live in London we need to build these homes. You create construction jobs - and jobs for young people because these are entry-level jobs - and you build confidence."

He said the government should stick to its fiscal plan, but that these measures were also needed to boost the housing market and would benefit first-time buyers, those trapped in negative equity and those looking to refurbish their homes.

Last month, the CBI said that the UK would avoid falling into a so-called triple-dip recession.

The group believes that the UK economy will grow by 0.3% in the first quarter of the year, after the economy shrank in the last quarter of 2012 - the first period in what some feared might be another six months of negative growth.

Spending debate

The suggestions come as the coalition partners continue to debate whether the government's austerity plans are the right course for the current flat economic conditions.

Both Prime Minister David Cameron and his Chancellor, George Osborne, are determined to keep to their plans to rein in spending.

On Monday, the former defence secretary, Liam Fox, a Conservative, called on the government to freeze the level of public spending for five years and spend the money saved on cutting taxes and the deficit.

He wants all public spending frozen - as against the current freeze for Whitehall departmental budgets.

He is also urging an end to the ring-fencing of certain budgets, including the NHS, schools and universal benefits such as the pensioners' winter fuel allowance.

The Liberal Democrat Business Secretary, Vince Cable, is also against ring fencing, although for different reasons.

He told the BBC that protecting some departments intensified the burden on others: "When you have 80% of all government spending that's ring-fenced it means all future pressures then come on things like the army, the police, local government, and skills and universities.

"So... you get a very unbalanced approach to public spending... I think as a long-term approach to government spending, it isn't very sensible."

George Osborne will announce the Budget on 20 March.

.. read more

Portsmouth administrators rack up £2.2m in fees
Date: 02/28/2013

PKF ADMINISTRATORS have racked up £2.2m in fees for their work on the collapsed football club Portsmouth FC, according to the latest creditor report.

The administrators have incurred the £2.2m of fees in time costs for the period 17 February 2012 to 2 January 2013. This is for 7,295 hours of work which is an average of about £297 an hour.

However, the administrators have managed to draw £775,000 so far following approval from a creditor committee. At the end of the administration the administrators will decide on the percentage of their fees to be repaid with that figure needing creditor committee approval before it can be drawn. 

The club entered administration for the second time in two years on 17 February, with PKF partners Trevor Birch, Ian Gould and Bryan Jackson appointed.

Fees for the six months ending 2 January 2013 amounted to £851,671 for 2,905 hours of work at an average hourly rate of £293 per hour.

The administrators are currently awaiting a court hearing which will determine whether a rescue deal will be viable through a sale to the Portsmouth Supporters Trust (PST).

The administrators said in the latest creditor report that "if a sale can't be achieved a liquidation is the most viable option."

PST has funded some of the trading costs amounting to £244,061. However, preferential claims so far come in at about £52,000 and unsecured creditor claims are about £35m, which £11.4m as football creditors.

In a football insolvency, football creditors such as players, managers and other clubs, are paid first and in full.

Other costs highlighted include solicitor fees for Pinsent Masons which for the year come in at about £1.24m and £79,000 for George Davies, who acted for the Professional Footballers' Association, on negotiation of player wage deferrals and agent fees.

Read more: 

.. read more

What makes a good temp?
Date: 03/17/2012

With the economic situation still having a massive bearing on the jobs front, temporary work could be a lifeline, but is it for everyone?

If you are considering temporary work, what can you do to make sure you’re the one Recruitment Consultants think of first when a new assignment comes in? Is temping really for you?

Sell yourself in a professional way to your recruitment agency.
When an agency are looking for a dependable temp, tell them why you are good. Are you flexible? Versatile? Quick at picking things up? Do you have the skills that are required? Easy to get along with? Are you available at short notice?

Sell yourself to the recruitment consultant as you would in a job interview: make a list of your previous jobs and highlight key accomplishments and skills you’ve gained.

Understand how recruitment agencies work.

Picture the scene; A company have a problem, it may be that they have an increased workload, a project that needs to be completed ASAP or a key employee has gone off sick. The want someone with relevant skills to help them. This is where you come in.

Think of yourself as a mercenary!
You have skills that are transferable; you have the experience that would benefit the Company. You have good communication skills. You have the skills that are needed, you are good at creating and developing relationships, you are available at short notice. You can help them!

Be flexible in every way you can!
Flexibility is the key to being a successful temp. It’s not just about being flexible in terms of when you start on a new assignment, either. If you want the work to keep coming your way, you need to be flexible in terms of the rate you’re paid for short term assignments; and the role you have.

How keen are you to get work?
What can you do if, on a Friday afternoon, you find yourself without an assignment or any work for the following Monday? Perhaps you are considering temping whilst looking for your ideal permanent role?
It seems clear that if you go the extra mile to get the work, by keeping in close contact with your consultant and contacting the agency on a regular basis, you’re more likely to be successful in ensuring the money keeps coming in. Remember, be persistence.

Will temping look bad on your CV?
We are often asked about this point. Some people do not want to temp as they believe it will detract from their stable work history. Our advice is to keep on working (if that is what you want/need) Gain more skills, gain more experience on different computer packages and more business sectors. If you have been temping for some time, group your experiences together and list your key skills and experience. Good employers will understand.

What happens next?
Many of the temporary people we work with at Ba Recruitment, we have known for some time. We have developed relationships with people we have found dependable and versatile. However, we are always looking for good people. It’s up to you to develop a relationship with your agency and whilst you are temping a good agency will always keep you in mind when a suitable permanent jobs comes in.

Happy job hunting!

.. read more

News From The BBC

BBC News - UK

BBC News - UK

Jeremy Hunt threatens social media with new child-protection laws
Sun, 22 Apr 2018 00:43:40 GMT

The health secretary wants action from the sites on underage use, bullying, and screen-time limits.

Dean Tate: Body found in search for missing man
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 21:30:25 GMT

Police believe the body on an island in the Bristol Channel is Dean Tate, 40, last seen two months ago.

Corbyn speaks to Welsh Labour as Carwyn Jones quits
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 23:31:43 GMT

Welsh Labour conference delegates are still reeling from news that Carwyn Jones is standing down.

Judah Adunbi charged with racially aggravated offence
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 22:10:43 GMT

Judah Adunbi was a former member of the Independent Advisory Group to Avon and Somerset Police.

WW1 hero to be honoured 100 years after daring submarine raid
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 23:04:03 GMT

Lt Richard Sandford blew up his submarine under a viaduct stopping German U-boats in 1918.

Amir Khan knocks out Phil lo Greco in 40 seconds
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 21:46:44 GMT

Amir Khan's return to the ring lasts less than a minute as he knocks out Phil lo Greco in 40 seconds in Liverpool.

Man, 20, dies in Finsbury Park stabbing
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 15:16:04 GMT

Police found two men with stab wounds a short distance from each other in Finsbury Park.

Boy, 3, drowns in David Lloyd fitness club pool in Leeds
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 15:43:18 GMT

The boy was swimming with his family in a David Lloyd Fitness Club in Moortown, Leeds.

Herrera goal sends Man Utd into FA Cup final
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 19:12:42 GMT

Manchester United reach a record-equalling 20th FA Cup final with victory over Tottenham at Wembley.

Allied Healthcare: Home care provider seeks rescue plan
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 15:53:21 GMT

Allied Healthcare, one of the UK's biggest providers of in-home care, blames a "challenging environment".

Biker dies in crash with ambulance near Lochgair
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 17:26:51 GMT

The man was killed in the collision which happened on the A83, near Lochgair in Argyll, at about 14:30.

Killer whales spotted in River Clyde near Dunoon
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 15:14:04 GMT

The mammals, which have been dubbed "urban Orcas" by one expert, have been filmed near Gourock and Dunoon.

The Queen celebrates her 92nd birthday
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 22:33:19 GMT

Shaggy, Kylie, Frank Skinner, and Ed Balls help Her Majesty celebrate at the Royal Albert Hall.

The dementia patient frightened to go into hospital
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 23:49:15 GMT

Tommy says hospital staff don?t always understand the needs of dementia patients.

Welsh first minister to stand down
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 14:26:43 GMT

First Minister Carwyn Jones will stand down, saying his family has carried him through "the darkest of times".

Rotherham: 'All I wanted was to be believed'
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 23:04:53 GMT

Abuse victim "Elizabeth" tells BBC News about her desire to see her attacker brought to justice.

'I want to look as good as my friends'
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 23:14:27 GMT

The make-up artist using her skills to help scarred women live a normal life.

Robbers used duvet cover in Manchester shop raid
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 11:54:18 GMT

Police appeal for information after three men stuffed a duvet cover with alcohol and cash.

Tourist takes crowdfunded trip to British islands
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 23:05:43 GMT

American Joe Hill thought a Facebook group for Jersey, the Channel Island, was for New Jersey.

BBC News Channel
Tue, 27 Mar 2018 07:24:26 GMT

BBC coverage of latest developments

Newspaper headlines: Stephen Lawrence's brother 'still fears killers'
Sun, 22 Apr 2018 03:40:54 GMT

Sunday's papers lead with demands on social media - and the anniversary of Stephen Lawrence's murder.

Is it easier or harder to live without plastic than 10 years ago?
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 23:45:13 GMT

Ten years ago I tried to live without plastic for a month. A decade on, would it be easier or harder?

Carwyn Jones: The leader who lost his grip
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 19:02:31 GMT

Carwyn Jones lost his authority after a minister he sacked over conduct allegations killed himself.

National Trust: Is it relevant if you live in a town or city?
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 18:23:49 GMT

The National Trust is getting "radical" as it tries to bring in more diverse members - how will it work?

Artist's sheep's eye view of the Cambrian Mountains
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 23:00:31 GMT

One woman's summer spent living as a sheep in the Cambrian Mountains in the name of art.

Why I wanted my male rape to be on Coronation Street
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 00:16:47 GMT

A 23-year-old tells Newsbeat how it feels to have his own rape used as a story on a soap.

Is marathon running bad for you?
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 23:59:30 GMT

Some 40,000 runners are due to take part in the London Marathon, but are those 26.2 miles doing us harm?

Heathrow v Gatwick: Could the winner be... Stansted?
Sat, 21 Apr 2018 00:34:06 GMT

Once synonymous with cheap flights and pre-breakfast pints - is Stansted Airport about to become glamorous?

Why do the Chinese love Bicester Village?
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 23:33:15 GMT

What's the appeal of a discount shopping centre in the middle of the British countryside?

Six shops defying the High Street downturn
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 20:46:00 GMT

It's not all doom and gloom for UK retailers, some are managing to buck the trend.

Advice for the Windrush generation on what to do next
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 12:45:35 GMT

Questions from those affected by the Windrush immigration row answered by an immigration lawyer.

Fancy that? Wacky outfits of London Marathon runners
Fri, 20 Apr 2018 15:43:07 GMT

It used to be rare but runners in fancy costumes are now a major part of the event and something the organisers encourage.