From the TUC

Scottish industrial heartlands join inner London as worst place to find a job

16 May 2011, by in Labour market

TUC analysis shows that the Scottish industrial heartlands of West Dunbartonshire and East Ayrshire have overtaken inner London boroughs to become Britain’s worst employment blackspots.

Our study, published ahead of the latest unemployment figures this week, looks at the proportion of Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) claimants to Jobcentre Plus vacancies in every local authority from March 2005 to March 2011. This analysis ranks each of the 206 local authority areas by its claimant to vacancies ratio.

In March 2005 the London borough of Newham was ranked the worst employment blackspot in Britain with nearly 15 dole claimants per job vacancy.

In March 2011 West Dunbartonshire was ranked the worst place to find a job with over 40 dole claimants chasing every vacancy. The Scottish local authority area was ranked 38 in 2005, suggesting a marked decline in the local labour market since the recession.

Across Britain, the number of dole claimants per vacancy has quadrupled from 1.5 in 2005 to 6 this year.

While the analysis finds strong evidence of persistent poor local job prospects – seven London boroughs, including Haringey and Lewisham, have been in the employment blackspots’ top ten for at least four of the last seven years – job prospects in some local authority areas have changed a great deal.

The London boroughs of Southwark, Islington and Kensington & Chelsea – all among the top ten employment blackspots in 2005 – are now ranked at 43, 45 and 47 respectively. Southwark is one of only three local authorities in Britain to have a better claimant to vacancy ratio now than in 2005.

Moray in the Highlands has had the most positive labour market change relative to the rest of Britain, moving from a ranking of 26 in 2005 to 98 in 2011.

However areas such as West Dunbartonshire, South Lanarkshire and the Isle of Wight, not regarded as areas with particularly bad employment prospects in 2005, are now all in and around the top ten.

Top ten employment blackspots, March 2011

Local area Claimant count Vacancies Ratio
West Dunbartonshire 3,786 94 40.3
East Ayrshire 4,564 139 32.8
Haringey 10,300 352 29.3
North Ayrshire 5,522 196 28.2
Lewisham 9,618 371 25.9
Hackney 10,653 412 25.9
Greenwich 7,509 328 22.9
Eilean Siar (Western Isles) 533 25 21.3
Isle of Wight 3,557 186 19.1
Lambeth 11,425 598 19.1

Top ten employment blackspots, March 2005

Local area Claimant count Vacancies Ratio
Newham 7,293 496 14.7
Tower Hamlets 7,746 614 12.6
Southwark 9,085 750 12.1
Lambeth 10,019 905 11.1
Hackney 7,660 718 10.7
Haringey 7,695 722 10.7
Lewisham 7,539 749 10.1
Islington 5,846 724 8.1
Greenwich 5,965 836 7.1
Kensington & Chelsea 2,517 366 6.9

Biggest changes between 2005 and 2011

Local area Ranking 2005 Ranking 2011 Change
West Dunbartonshire 38 1 +37
South Lanarkshire 44 12 +32
Isle of Wight 37 8 +29
Midlothian 43 17 +26
Rhonda, Cynon, Taff 45 23 +22
Aberdeen City 50 105 -55
Suffolk 46 101 -55
Gwynedd 43 100 -57
Kingston upon Thames 46 103 -57
Westminster 38 98 -60
Moray 26 98 -72

Source: nomisweb.co.uk

Download our analysis as an Excel workbook.

3 Responses to Scottish industrial heartlands join inner London as worst place to find a job

  1. Employment Blackspots – update | ToUChstone blog: A public policy blog from the TUC
    May 18th 2011, 1:05 pm

    […] Monday our analysis showed that the Scottish industrial heartlands of West Dunbartonshire and East Ayrshire have […]

  2. Employment Blackspots -Update | ToUChstone blog: A public policy blog from the TUC
    Jun 15th 2011, 1:12 pm

    […] previous analysis in March showed that West Dunbartonshire was Britain’s worst employment blackspot. The […]

  3. Employment Blackspots – update | ToUChstone blog: A public policy blog from the TUC
    Jul 13th 2011, 12:23 pm

    […] previous analysis in May examined unemployment data from March 2005 to March 2011 and found strong evidence of persistent poor local job prospects, with London being one of the worst […]