HC Deb 15 March 1995 vol 256 c887
4. Ms Hodge

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many training places have been created through regeneration policies since April 1992.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Environment (Sir Paul Beresford)

My Department's regeneration programmes have created more than 270,000 training places over this period.

Ms Hodge

At the peak of the last economic boom, there were desperate skill shortages in London, but 200,000 people were registered as unemployed. Does the Minister agree that the single regeneration budget guidelines should be reviewed to give training greater priority so that, if there is another economic boom, the crisis of no jobs will not be replaced by a crisis of no skills?

Sir Paul Beresford

The hon. Lady obviously does not understand that the SRB is a partnership with local authorities and others. [Interruption.] She obviously understands more about urban degeneration than about urban regeneration. When she wore her previous hat, Islington in the 1980s was the seventh worst council of all the English local authorities in the index of local conditions; today it is the fourth worst.

Mrs. Angela Knight

Will my hon. Friend confirm that one of the basic criteria for single generation bids was the creation of jobs? When the second round is considered, will he undertake to give priority to areas such as Erewash which were unsuccessful in the first round?

Sir Paul Beresford

I accept and understand my hon. Friend's concern for her area. I hope that she will help to ensure that its bid is more competitive. Through the process since 1992 or in the pipeline, some 340,000 jobs have been either created or safeguarded.