Tag Archive: employment

UK employment falls by most since 2015

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Signs that a Brexit slowdown may be taking a toll on the country

After a strong steady rise in employment in recent years, the number of people in work in Britain fell by the most in more than two years in the three months to September.

Experts have cautioned this may be a sign that a Brexit slowdown may be taking its toll on the economy’s strong run of job creation.

Official data shows the number of people in employment fell by 14,000 while the measure of people not in work and not seeking a job rose by the most in nearly eight years.

“After two years of almost uninterrupted growth, employment has declined slightly on the quarter,” said Matt Hughes of the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The number of people in work remained higher than a year earlier, however, and statistician Hughes warned that people should not read too much into figures for one quarter.

The last time the number of people in work in Britain fell was in the three months to October last year, although that decline was small.

The biggest fall in employment in the latest figures occurred among people aged between 18 and 24, suggesting some of the weakness might be due to young people giving up work to pursue their studies, although the seasonally adjusted figures should smooth out that effect.

Britain’s economy initially withstood the shock of last year’s decision by voters to leave the European Union but has slowed in 2017 and is growing at half the rate of Germany. Most forecasters expect it to slow further in 2018.

The ONS said the unemployment rate held at a four-decade low of 4.3 percent but that pay growth, which would usually be expected to rise with so many people in work remained much slower than inflation.

The ONS said workers’ total earnings, including bonuses, rose by an annual 2.2 percent in the three months to September. That was weaker than 2.3 percent in the three months to August but a touch stronger than a median forecast of 2.1 percent in a Reuters poll of economists.

Excluding bonuses, earnings rose by 2.2 percent year-on-year, the ONS said, in line with expectations.

Data published by the ONS shows British consumer price inflation stood at 3.0 percent in October, maintaining the squeeze on the spending power of households.

Prime Minister Theresa May has promised help for households and her chancellor, Philip Hammond, is under pressure to come up with further measures when he announces his budget plan on 22nd November.

Braniacs! Titus Salt School Pupils Progress and Succeed with 0% NEET

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Titus Salt School, for the sixth successive year has each pupil that leaving at the end of Year 11 or Sixth Form studies has progressed to a high quality destination.  

They are the only school in Bradford to have achieved this.

0% NEET means that no pupil has become ‘Not in Education, Employment or Training’ and is one indicator of how well a school prepares its pupils for further learning, work and training.  

Each Titus Salt School pupil has a personalised programme of careers education, advice and guidance including opportunities for work experience, studying local enterprises as part of coursework and case studies.

The school works with Prospects to ensure pupils receive impartial and high quality careers advice.  Recent developments include sponsorship from Costain plc to extend our STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) provision and also the involvement of Leeds Ahead who support the delivery of enterprise education and skills.

In addition, Titus Salt School continues to develop strong links with Universities and Further Education colleges and is delighted to see that the percentage of pupils going to the top Russell Group universities was double the national figure in 2016.

Ian Morrel, Headteacher said: “We are committed to help every pupil leave with a good education and ready to embark on their next steps.  

“Our zero NEET, development of STEM and collaboration with employers such as Costain plc means we can support our pupils to get a great insight into the world of work, training and further academic study.  

“We are grateful for the support we get from many local businesses, universities and colleges to ensure our offer is broad, high quality and personalised.”

Blacks Solicitors: No trimming of restrictive covenants for hairdresser

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Restrictive Covenants are typically found in employment contracts where they are used to regulate the activities of employees during their employment and to enforce restrictions post-employment.  However, restrictive covenants can also be found in other areas, for example in agreements in relation to the sale of businesses.  This was the situation in Rush Hair Limited v Hayley Gibson-Forbes and S.J. Forbes Limited, a case which was recently heard by the High Court.  

In that case Rush sought to enforce two restrictive covenants contained in a share purchase agreement relating to the sale of a business to them by Ms Gibson.  The covenants in question stipulated that Ms Gibson would not at any time during the period of two years from completion of the sale of the company:

  • Seek to canvas, solicit, entice or employ key employees from the company.  
  • Be directly or indirectly engaged, concerned, employed or interested in any competing business within a defined geographical area.

Ms Gibson did not directly breach any covenants herself but a company, S.J. Forbes Limited, of which Ms Gibson was a director and shareholder, did.  Accordingly, Ms Gibson argued that as the covenants did not expressly prohibit the conduct of S.J. Forbes, she had therefore not acted in breach of the restrictive covenants.  

However the Court disagreed and upheld both covenants.  

In considering the restrictions contained in the first covenant, the Court found that it prohibited not only activities carried out by Ms Gibson on her own behalf but also activities done by her as an agent for S.J. Forbes.  Ms Gibson had historically operated her business from a limited company of which she was a director and shareholder and it was the limited company that employed the staff.  

The Court was of the view that both Rush and Ms Gibson would have understood that a covenant binding on Ms Gibson only in respect of acts done on her own behalf (rather than as agent for another) would have been ineffective.  The Judge considered that the wording contained in the restrictive covenant did not compel such an interpretation and that the covenant should be construed in the only way that was commercially sensible, namely prohibiting Ms Gibson from canvassing, soliciting, enticing or employing any of the named individuals whether on her own behalf or as an agent for another.

This case illustrates how the courts are prepared to pierce the corporate veil where the alleged breaches are carried out by a company controlled by the breaching party so as to prevent that party from circumventing restrictions to which it had agreed to in the first instance.

If you acquire advice and assistance regarding the drafting of share purchase agreements or employment contracts or with the enforcement of any of the terms of those agreements then please contact Luke Patel on 0113 227 9316 or by email at “”.

Cooking up success

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SIGNED UP: Students currently on work placements in the catering sector celebrate with Stafflex and Kirklees College staff, (l-r) Jude Flatley, KC Works project manager for Kirklees College; student Humairaa Ghazan; Maggie Netherwood Stafflex business development manager; student Mercy Dengure; Linda Kitson, HR manager for Polyframe

SIGNED UP: Students currently on work placements in the catering sector celebrate with Stafflex and Kirklees College staff, (l-r) Jude Flatley, KC Works project manager for Kirklees College; student Humairaa Ghazan; Maggie Netherwood Stafflex business development manager; student Mercy Dengure; Linda Kitson, HR manager for Polyframe

Work experience scheme launches at local college

Kirklees College have joined forces with employment experts, Stafflex, to provide students with a platform to gain valuable work experience and help employers create their future workforce.

‘KC Works’ gives employers the opportunity to ‘try before they buy’ by taking prospective employees on for work experience to see if it works out first.

Meanwhile, students will get a better understanding of individual organisations and the workplace – giving them valuable employability skills for when they leave college to work.

Local employers were invited to a launch event in the college’s Landings 72 Restaurant on Monday to find out how they can get involved either though offering work experience or placements or taking on an apprentice.

Kirklees College vice principal Melanie Brooke told employers the scheme was about developing work-based employability skills.

“Too often we hear that young people aren’t prepared for work,” she said.

“We can give them the knowledge, skills and techniques but you’re the people who can mould them into the employees of the future.

“Kirklees College is a high performing college specialising in vocational training. We are not a last option, we are the first choice for the right students and together we can get young people into employment and help regenerate the local area.”

Jude Flatley, KC Works project manager for Kirklees College, added: “Stafflex are experts at employer engagement and Kirklees College are experts in education so hopefully together we can give students exciting work placements and help employers fill the gaps in their workforce with skilled people.

“We are really passionate about this project and giving our students the best opportunity for work when they leave college.”

The Stafflex team will help to prepare the young recruits for employers from across the region, many of whom are already clients of the long-established recruitment firm.

Colne Valley MP Jason McCartney also attended the launch and said he would be supporting the scheme by taking on an apprentice.