Following the recent Conservative Party Conference, Craig Tracey, MP for North Warwickshire and Bedworth, has shown his support for the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, the only organisation dedicated to investing in the future of former mining communities.
New statistics have highlighted the positive and lasting impact that the Coalfields Regeneration Trust has had on areas devastated by the pit closures over the last thirty years; reporting a direct impact on more than 2m people since the organisation was established in 1999.
Focusing on tackling deprivation, ill health and unemployment within these communities, the Coalfields Regeneration Trust has supported 25,342 people into work and has created or safeguarded a further 5,375 jobs.
In addition, the organisation has improved the skills and qualifications of 1,300,025 people, has engaged 225,452 people in health-improving activities and has supported 2,822 social enterprises.
`The State of the Coalfields’ report, by Sheffield Hallam University, highlighted many of the challenges that coalfield communities still experience such as the fact that there are over 500,000 people out of work on benefits in the coalfields.
With fewer jobs and businesses per head than other areas in the country, the problems that still remain require the joint efforts of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Government, LEP’s and local authorities in order to tackle them.
Showing his commitment to the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Craig Tracey, MP for North Warwickshire and Bedworth commented: “It is clear that the people within our constituency are extremely receptive to any support that is offered and I am committed to making sure we work together moving forward to make a lasting and positive difference.
“We know that when we work with organisations like The Coalfields Regeneration Trust we can build skills, secure jobs and create new opportunities for the people of North Warwickshire and Bedworth. It all takes time, especially when you consider the size of the challenge ahead but we are committed to having a lasting effect.
“As the only organisation dedicated to supporting the coalfield communities for the benefit of future generations, I am pleased to announce my commitment to them.”
Chairman of the Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Peter McNestry said: “We welcome Craig’s support and would call upon other MP’s to do the same. We have come a long way in the last 15 years but it is clear that there is still a huge job to be done.”
He adds: “The statistics have shown that residents of the coalfields simply want the opportunity to get back on their feet. The recession had a disproportionate impact on coalfield communities and we need to address this in order to make long-term changes. We want to ensure that all coalfield communities are reporting statistics that are in line with the national average.”
Over a third of the population of Britain’s coalfield communities have benefitted from support delivered by the Coalfields Regeneration Trust over the last 15 years. Its continued efforts, which focus on employment, skills and health and wellbeing, will tackle the immediate and ongoing challenges that face the communities.
For more information about the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and the programmes that it has available for individuals, community groups and commercial organisations please visit www.coalfields-regen.org.uk.