Ed Balls visits Worcester to heap praise on city's rich heritage

Ed Balls visits Worcester to heap praise on city's rich heritage

Shadow Chancellor Ed Balls with apprentices at Worcester Bosch

Ed Balls in the call centre at Worcester Bosch today

First published in News Worcester News: Tom Edwards by , Political Reporter

SHADOW Chancellor Ed Balls breezed into Worcester today - heaping praise on one of the city's top employers.

The Labour big-hitter had a tour of Worcester Bosch, talking to 60 apprentices who landed dream jobs with the company.

During a sit-down interview with your Worcester News Mr Balls praised the city's manufacturing and engineering heritage, saying it holds the key to the nation's economic recovery.

He also suggested people in Worcester are still finding life hard due to a "cost of living crisis", and urged Chancellor George Osborne to address it in next Wednesday's budget.

He said: "If you ask people in Worcester whether they are seeing the benefits of an economic recovery, I think the answer will be no.

"For me, most people would say there's been no recovery, if you work in say the NHS or elsewhere you've faced pay freezes and prices have gone up."

He said he was energised by Worcester Bosch, which employs more than 1,000 people at its base off Cotswold Way, in Warndon.

"What I've seen today is absolutely fantastic, there were 60 apprentices up there and it was clear to me how much they enjoy being here," he said.

"If you can land an apprenticeship here it's a dream job.

"This kind of flourishing manufacturing plant is what we need more of, I'm very impressed by it."

He was accompanied by Councillor Joy Squires, Worcester's parliamentary candidate at the next general election, and said people should "vote Joy" to help Labour into Government.

He also told your Worcester News Mr Osborne's budget should offer more help for families, and revealed he was concerned about the possibility of the Bank of England increasing interest rates too early.

The bank's Governor Mark Carney has revealed rates could rise six-fold to three per cent by 2017 if Britain's recovery grows in momentum.

"The concern I have is that we could see interest rates go up too early before the economy has really picked up," said Mr Balls.

During his stay he got to tour the HQ, talking to workers about their jobs.

He also took part in an interview with the BBC's Political Editor Nick Robinson, which is being screened to the nation on BBC1 news tonight.

ENERGY MINISTER ALSO IMPRESSED BY WORCESTER

ENERGY minister Greg Barker came to Worcester to see how the city's householders are saving on their energy bills.

The Government minister went on a tour of Worcester's Brickfields area earlier today, talking to residents that have had the 'brick effect render' done on their properties.

Over the last year 500 social housing tentants have benefited from a £750,000 Worcester Community Housing project to have an extra layer of cladding around their home.

It is being credited with keeping people warmer, and saving on fuel bills.

The scheme is in line to be rolled out further, with most of the funds for it coming from central Government.

David Burgess, 65, who lives with wife Lynda, also 65, in Glenthorne Avenue, had the rendering done in May last year.

Mr Burgess, a retired mechanical fitter, said: "It's been great, the scheme has certainly made a difference.

"It is five degress outside but the house has no heating on and it's currently 20 degrees inside here.

"I can leave the heating off for hours."

Under the deal, the couple paid around £1,500 for the work on the basis it would steadily bring energy bills down.

Social housing tenants without the means are having the work done for free on a strict priority basis, with Westdale Services contracted to carry it out.

Around 250 private home owners in Worcester have paid for it to be done.

Mr Barker said: "Worcester is a great example for the rest of Britain on this.

"I think it's great, the Government is commited to it and clearly, saving on energy bills when they are so high is really important."

Comments (6)

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8:50pm Thu 13 Mar 14

Keith B says...

One of the greatest dangers to Britain are Mr and Mrs Balls. He was the man responsible for so much that went wrong under Gordon Brown, I can't believe that the electorate are seriously considering giving him the reigns again. And yet the alternative choice is a posh group of Eton schoolboys who don't seem to have any real grasp of what affects real people around the nation.

Worcester is clearly a key marginal so we will get a lot of attention in the next year - but there won't be a lot of joy if Joy does win the seat - because it will mean we will almost certainly have a Labour Government ... and that will be a disaster for the UK. The only hope England, Wales and Northern Ireland has is if the Scots cut themselves adrift and take all those safe Labour seats with them.

And as that doesn't appear to be happening ... will the last person out of the Country please turn off the lights.
One of the greatest dangers to Britain are Mr and Mrs Balls. He was the man responsible for so much that went wrong under Gordon Brown, I can't believe that the electorate are seriously considering giving him the reigns again. And yet the alternative choice is a posh group of Eton schoolboys who don't seem to have any real grasp of what affects real people around the nation. Worcester is clearly a key marginal so we will get a lot of attention in the next year - but there won't be a lot of joy if Joy does win the seat - because it will mean we will almost certainly have a Labour Government ... and that will be a disaster for the UK. The only hope England, Wales and Northern Ireland has is if the Scots cut themselves adrift and take all those safe Labour seats with them. And as that doesn't appear to be happening ... will the last person out of the Country please turn off the lights. Keith B
  • Score: 4

10:19am Fri 14 Mar 14

MJI says...

Well I have no reason to vote for a different person than last time
Well I have no reason to vote for a different person than last time MJI
  • Score: -2

3:07pm Sat 15 Mar 14

worcester man67 says...

Councillor Joy Squires, Worcester's parliamentary candidate at the next general election. God help us!
Councillor Joy Squires, Worcester's parliamentary candidate at the next general election. God help us! worcester man67
  • Score: 0

3:44pm Sat 15 Mar 14

worcester man67 says...

I suddenly remembered the Rt. Hon. Tub of lard from the BBC TV "Have I Got News For You. Which stood in for a Labour MP who failed to turn up for a broadcast and the tub of lard was apparently is imbued with much the same qualities and liable to give a similar performance. So can we have that instead? At least the ker-ching into the expenses and the pension pot would be less of the burden.
I suddenly remembered the Rt. Hon. Tub of lard from the BBC TV "Have I Got News For You. Which stood in for a Labour MP who failed to turn up for a broadcast and the tub of lard was apparently is imbued with much the same qualities and liable to give a similar performance. So can we have that instead? At least the ker-ching into the expenses and the pension pot would be less of the burden. worcester man67
  • Score: 0

3:55pm Sat 15 Mar 14

Doogie 46 says...

Unfortunately Mr Balls absolutely does not believe he and Brown got anything wrong - so if,as seems likely, Balls, Balls, Milliband and McLuskey are elected to power next year, we can expect more of the disasterous same.
Robin Walker is a far better MP for Worcester than Foster ever was and better than Joy Squires could ever hope to be.
Must say, I hated the 70`s and I don`t really want to go back there with Balls & co.
Unfortunately Mr Balls absolutely does not believe he and Brown got anything wrong - so if,as seems likely, Balls, Balls, Milliband and McLuskey are elected to power next year, we can expect more of the disasterous same. Robin Walker is a far better MP for Worcester than Foster ever was and better than Joy Squires could ever hope to be. Must say, I hated the 70`s and I don`t really want to go back there with Balls & co. Doogie 46
  • Score: 0

9:34pm Sat 15 Mar 14

PrivateSi says...

His first name is Dick as far as I'm concerned.... muttered a public erection out loud...
His first name is Dick as far as I'm concerned.... muttered a public erection out loud... PrivateSi
  • Score: -1

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