THE number of out-of-work benefit claimants across Herefordshire has fallen significantly since 2014.

The Department of Work and Pensions' May figures show there were 1,286 claimants in Herefordshire, which is an increase of 88 since the same time last year, but a decrease of 681 compared to the same time five years ago.

Of those, 192 were aged 18 to 24, an increase of 19 compared to the same time last year, but a decrease of 238 since the same time five years ago.

The number of claimants was measured using the new Alternative Claimant Count, which was introduced following the introduction of Universal Credit.

It includes those claiming jobseeker's allowance, universal credit with searching for work conditionality, housing benefit, child tax credit and partners of income based jobseeker's allowance, employment and support allowance or income support claimants.

The Jobcentre will be working with Marches LEP, the University of Wolverhampton, the Careers and Enterprise Company and Herefordshire Council to deliver the Herefordshire Skills Show, to be held at Hereford Racecourse from 12pm to 7.30pm on July 3.

A wide range of employers and industries will be represented at the event, including cyber, gaming, engineering, the creative industries, hair and beauty, medical, the armed forces and the emergency services.

And, a Jobcentre spokesperson confirmed, there are currently various positions available at Avara Foods, Aldi's Leominster, Ross, Ledbury, Hereford and Ludlow stores, and a recycling plant in Rotherwas.

They are also working with several agencies keen to speak to FLT licence holders.