The latest figures released by the Office of National Statistics this week show the number of unemployed claimants in Bill Wiggin MPs’ North Herefordshire constituency in September 2015 was 409 – a rise of 11 from August 2015 but a fall of 72 compared with September 2014.

Bill Wiggin MP said: “Whilst I am disappointed there has been a rise in the local unemployment rate, I remain pleased with current levels and I am confident we will see the numbers falling again soon.

Nationally the employment rate is at the highest in our history – at 73.6 per cent of people aged 16-64; unemployment has fallen to a seven year low – at 5.4 per cent; and the number of unemployed young people who are not full-time students is the lowest in a decade – 6.2 per cent of the youth population.”

August’s unemployment rate represents a rate of 1.0% of the economically active population aged 16 to 64, the 551st highest of the 650 UK constituencies. (1st = highest claimant rate, 650th = lowest claimant rate.) The equivalent UK claimant rate was 2.5%.