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29/01/16 16:56

Fraserburgh Task Force

Members updated on action to support workers and local economy.

A new bus service to support fish processing workers has been welcomed by Fergus Ewing.

The pilot service, arranged by Aberdeenshire Council and to be run by a commercial operator, will begin in the Spring to help workers travel to alternative employment in Peterhead and Boddam.

Business Minister Fergus Ewing said:

“The idea of a new bus service was raised with me a fortnight ago by Eilidh Whiteford MP and I welcome the fact that Aberdeenshire Council recognises this is a practical support for people and is moving as quickly as it can to put the service in place.

“300 people attended yesterday’s Jobs Fair, a positive and successful event which reflects demand of workers across the town to find out about new opportunities. I am heartened by how well Young’s, unions and agencies continue to collaborate to reach out to the workforce.

“We continue to support Young’s staff to stay in work through our initiative for responding to redundancy situations, Partnership Action for Continuing Employment (PACE). PACE is providing tailored skills development and employability support on site and at various locations around the town to a significant number of staff who have been made redundant and who have asked for support.

“The PACE track record is good – nearly three quarters of people made redundant and using PACE find work within six months – and tracking is in place to carry out a full evaluation of the service.

“Aberdeenshire Council continues to look at medium term economic diversification of the area, such as offshore renewables, improving connectivity or enhancing accommodation facilities.

“The newly signed Aberdeen City and Region Deal will also help the area, with new funding for digital infrastructure and university-led innovation centres of excellence looking at agriculture and food and drink."

The new service is an extension to an existing public service and it is expected to be in operation in April.

Cllr Thomson, co-leader of Aberdeenshire Council said :

“It’s important to help workers in any way we can to access alternative employment and transport is a key consideration, especially for workers who don’t have a car. I am delighted we will be able to put this service in place, which will run seven days a week, to help workers in Fraserburgh get to work in Peterhead and Boddam.”

Times for the new services will be publicised as soon as they are finalised, along with fare information.