Town stifled by hidden unemployment(September 24, 2011)
WARMINSTER needs a major co-operation between local commerce, the military and the local councils to promise a brighter future as so many residents now are 'anonymously' unemployed as a result of the local job centre being closed years ago.
"I have made it clear in the past to our MP Andrew Murrison that he needs act positively about the future of the former REME workshops which is going to be in new hands and in private ownership before too long," says vfw co-author Paul Macdonald.
"This appears to me to be a perfect place to create defence related civilian jobs. I am fed up with those that look after Warminster as our elected representatives shrugging their shoulders and just taking on their roles."
The gripes that are being continually expressed to Paul extend far further and he believes that there is too little action and far too much that is left to others.
"Do any of them from the MP down to the vacant councillor Steve Wheeler realise how serious the situation is now ?" asks Paul.
"We have no Magistrates Court, no Town Hall, emergency hospital care twenty miles away, proposed police response ten miles away, police cells at Melksham or Salisbury, a self serving town council, no job centre, train station ticket office under threat, an unopened 'mega-loan civic centre', and so much more that leaves Warminster in the lurch. When will it end!"
The closure years ago of the job centre was the leading forerunner of the latest move to base police response teams in Trowbridge.
Paul argued at the time of the closure of the jobcentre and the resultant change to reporting unemployment figures that it leaves Warminster in the dark and signals the slippery slope to complacency.
"This is unfair and leaves a huge army of those that are now 'anonymously' unemployed on the books at Trowbridge but begs the question.
"Time to bring control back to Warminster that the local government re-organisation amongst others promised."
* A nearby example at Middle Wallop, opposite the Army Air Corps base, proves our point. Wallop Defence Systems, which was taken over by Esterline three years ago, has seen the number employed there since the takeover expand from 50 to 200. It shows the potential that exists in the defence arena - but have we the visionary local members to encourage business (rather than simply fly-'businessmen asset strippers') to buy into Warminster?