Archive | October, 2013

Royal Mail workers vote to strike

Posted on 16 October 2013 by editor

Royal Mail workers have voted four-to0-one in favour of strike action on 4th Nov – the first national strike at Royal Mail in almost four years. 63% of union members took part, with 78% of those in favour of strike action.

The strike is to protect employees terms and conditions, which are under threat in view of the recent privatisation. The CWU has said that communications are still ongoing and they hope to avoid a strike on the 4th Nov.

Royal Mail was recently privatised with shares reaching a high of £4.89. On Tuesday, Royal Mail confirmed that full-time staff would receive 725 shares, worth £3,545 at Tuesday’s close. Labour has critisised the government for selling the shares too cheap.

The CWU’s deputy general secretary, Dave Ward, said: “Postal workers have spoken very clearly that they care about their jobs, terms and conditions far more than they care about shares.

“We have said from the beginning that we want an agreement and we still do. We have offered the company a two-week period to reach an agreement and having already had many hours of negotiation, this is achievable if there is a will.”

The strike will bear relief for some residents, as Royal Mail is widely used by Direct Marketers for unsolicited mail. Royal Mail however, have said that the strike could damage the service as customers and businesses seek to take their custom elsewhere.

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Midlands Metro unveils £40m tram upgrade

Posted on 16 October 2013 by editor

The Midlands Metro which runs between Birmingham and Wolverhampton have unveiled a new tram from the £40 million fleet due next year.

The new Urbos 3 trams are a third bigger than those in current use made by Ansaldo Trasporti and can carry approx. 200 passengers. The entire fleet will be introduced on the network between Birmingham and Wolverhampton next year.

Work is already being undertaken to extend the metro route, this is due to be completed in 2015.

They will go into service on the existing Metro route between Birmingham and Wolverhampton next year as well as the new route.

The first of the new fleet was unveiled by Birmingham City Council leader Sir Albert Bore during a unveiling ceremony at the Midland Metro depot in Potters Lane, Wednesbury. The depot itself has been extended to cater for the new fleet of trams at a cost of £14m.

Sir Albert said: “The delivery of the first tram is a real milestone because Metro has a key role to play in the on-going development of our transport network so that it can underpin economic growth right across the West Midlands.

“Work is already underway on the city centre extension but we are now planning to take the Metro on further to Centenary Square as well as extending it through Wolverhampton city centre to the railway station.”

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Chinese Firms invest in Birmingham and the Midlands

Posted on 14 October 2013 by editor

Birmingham and the Midlands has become a firm favourite with Chinese investors as more high profile takeovers have been announced. Since chinese firm Nanjing Automotive acquired MG Rover some 8 years ago, the midlands has seen a rise in takeovers.

Another more recent takeover has been at the Coventry based London Taxi Company (LTI) which was bought by Chinese car maker Geely.

NVC Lighting, one of the biggest manufacturers of its kind in China recently set up a large manufacturing warehouse in Rubery – drawn there because of the easy transport links to the M5, M6, M42 and M40.

LTI also recently brought the collapsed firm LDV vans.

Experts believe the West Midlands offers good investment opportunities for yet more Chinese firms.

According to Business Birmingham’s Regional Observatory, the Greater Birmingham and Solihull enterprise zone saw an 88% increase in foreign investment projects in 2012-13, creating more than 2,000 new jobs.

Business Birmingham has targeted China as potentially one of its largest sources of investment, employing someone there to sell the West Midlands to the Chinese as a place to do business.

According to the Department of Trade and Industry, the value of Chinese investments across the country rose last year, with an increase in the number of new or safeguarded jobs as a result.

LTI is further evidence that China has a large role to play in the West Midlands.

Its new Chinese owners are looking to expand production and move into a new factory somewhere in the Coventry area.

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Plans to revamp mental health unit at children’s hospital

Posted on 11 October 2013 by editor

Plan have been unveiled by Birmingham Children’s Hospital to upgrade its mental health unit in Moseley. The plans include a music room, treatment rooms, fitness and 44 bedrooms to help treat children aged five to 18 who suffer a range of mental health issues including eating disorders such as anorexia. One of the key benefits will be allowing natural light into open spaces.

Chief executive Sarah-Jane Marsh said: “Our existing facilities (at Parkview) have become outdated, and we are currently only able to offer shared bedrooms, which is not acceptable.”

The estimated cost of the upgrade is in the region of £9m and will take 3 years to complete and is thought to be the largest in the UK. The planning stages involved staff and patients input, as well as families.

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Advertise Jobs for FREE

Posted on 08 October 2013 by editor

Do you have jobs you want to advertise? We will allow you to advertise jobs for free on birminghamnewsplus in return that you mention, share and promote your jobs on our website by pasting the following HTML code on your website:

<a href=”http://www.birminghamnewsplus.com”>Find our Jobs on Birmingham News Plus</a>

or, simply share this page on twitter, facebook or google+ using the share button below.

It really is that simple. All we ask is that you tell others about our website by using the above HTML code, plus you share on twitter, facebook and any other social media platform.

Posts will normally go live within 48 hours. We accept vacancies in microsoft word format, acrobat pdf, excel, rich text format, plain text format or on the body of an email. Please remember to include your closing date. In the event that this is not included, posts will be removed within 28 days.

Simply send your vacancies by email to: jobs@birminghamnewsplus.com

Advertise Jobs for FREE is at the discretion of the editor and birminghamnewsplus reserves the right to reject adverts if they do not meet our diversity standards.

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Defender Land Rover to Cease

Posted on 08 October 2013 by editor

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has announced that it will cease production of the Defender Land Rover in Dec 2015 because it will be unable to meet the strict EU laws on emissions. Over 2 million of the vehicles have been made in the last 67 years.

It said no jobs will be lost and it is currently working on a replacement for the Defender. It said a replacement model for the Defender was being developed to be launched in 2016.

JLR’s head of products, John Edwards, said the new model would be “instantly recognised” by people who drive the current vehicle but it “won’t necessarily be cheap”.

JLR said that the decision to cease production was “mainly legislation based.”

The defender in comparison to the other JLR models is extremely labour intensive, so it is inevitable that a replacement was likely to occur at some point. The Defender is well known for its workhorse capability and as such is widely used in farming and the military.

 

 

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Win 90 days free nutrition

Posted on 08 October 2013 by editor

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