Marks & Spencer has announced its new £40m Wolstanton megastore will open Wednesday 19th November 2014, bringing up to 250 jobs to North Staffordshire. The 140,000 sq.ft. store will offer all M&S Womenswear and Menswear ranges, plus a 200-seat M&S Café and a 10,000 sq.ft. Food Hall with 7,000 products. The store is now recruiting for jobs.
Motiva Group has opened a new £700,000 high-tech workshop in Stoke-on-Trent. The move will transform Motiva's behind-the-scenes operations, and enable a move into corporate servicing. The new unit represents the first phase of a project to redevelop the entire premises in Stoke-on-Trent, with the vehicle solutions firm bringing all its long-established satellite facilities into the city.
The number of grass and bin fires across Staffordshire has more than halved in the last three years, new figures reveal. There were 1,906 fires from April 1 to August 31 in 2011. That figure has dropped to 866 during the same period this year. And the number fell by 32 per cent from 1,281 in 2013.
Thousands of amateur sportsmen and women from the UK's biggest companies will be competing in the region next year - some of them at Newcastle-under-Lyme College. Between 4,000 and 6,000 competitors are expected for the 2015 UK Corporate Games being held in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent for three days in June. Venues will include Newcastle College, Keele and Staffordshire Universities, Fenton Manor and Trentham Gardens.
Keele University library has halved its energy use through new light fittings and switches. The number of lights has been reduced from 1,040 to 700, which use new LED and flourescent bulbs. Automated switches will switch off lights as people leave an area. Three solar installations help to power the library's lighting needs.
Nando's have announced they will open their first Stoke-on-Trent eatery in the city centre. The popular chicken restaurant chain will take its place in the £20 million catering and leisure extension at the intu Potteries Centre in Hanley.
THOUSANDS of pupils across Staffordshire and Cheshire were celebrating GCSE success today. St Thomas More Catholic Academy, in Longton, has seen a nine per cent improvement at GCSE this year. Haywood Academy, in Burslem also saw a nine per cent improvement over last year's results.
THE Government claims parents in the Potteries will save up to £2.8 million once free school lunches are offered to all infant pupils. In Stoke-on-Trent, 6,957 youngsters in reception, Year 1 and Year 2 classes will be eligible for the free dinners as part of the national initiative from next month. As families spend an average of £400-a-year on school lunches for every child, the savings could be considerable.
PRIMARY school children in Staffordshire have made 'considerable improvements' at Key Stage 2, with initial results showing an increase in reading, writing and maths. The new figures also show that 11-year-olds across the county are making marked improvements in the tests and teacher assessments. Most pupils are expected to obtain a level four, and initial results show that in Staffordshire, more than 85 per cent of pupils achieved at least that level in writing and maths this year.
THE village of Blackshaw Moor has become one of the first communities in the Staffordshire Moorlands to benefit from Staffordshire’s multi-million pound high-speed fibre broadband programme. Around 150 premises in the community now have access to faster fibre broadband for the first time as a result of the project.
THE number of people killed or seriously injured on the region's roads has fallen to the lowest level since records began. New figures show the number of people killed in the Staffordshire Police area has plummeted from 125 in 1984 to 28 last year.
The number of people out of work and on the dole in Staffordshire and Cheshire has fallen by nearly 12,000 since last August. The figure fell by 1,464 last month. Across the West Midlands, which includes Staffordshire, it fell by 9,000 people last month.
Volunteers in the town of Stone have struck gold for the eighth year in a row. The Heart of England in Bloom Awards were announced in Shrewsbury yesterday, and Stone in Bloom notched up another gold award in the Large Town category.
The Staffordshire Women's Food and Farming Union has announced that a tribute sculpture to the Women's Land Army and Women's Timber Corps is to be unveiled. The sculpture will be a double sculpture of a farm Land Girl and a forestry Lumber Gill, of more than life-size, sited at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire.
Work has started today on a new £30 million pounds golf course at Staffordshire based JCB. The 18-hole, 7,150 yard, Par 72 championship golf course is to be built on 240 acres of rolling countryside to the south of the World HQ in Rocester. When completed in 2018, it is expected that up to 100 people will be employed in grounds care and hospitality roles.
CONTROL orders banning dogs from some public spaces in the Potteries are set to be introduced in the autumn. Stoke-on-Trent City Council completed a public consultation on its proposals to bring in the restrictions at parks and other public spaces in June. The orders can be used to ban dogs from a given area, or make it necessary to keep them on a lead.
ONE of Stoke-on-Trent's premier tourist attraction is celebrating its 40th anniversary in style. Gladstone Pottery Museum was opened on August 20, 1974, after businessman Derek Johnson saved the potbank and handed it to the Staffordshire Pottery Industry Preservation Trust.
ARCHITECTS involved in the overhaul of Wedgwood's headquarters in North Staffordshire have unveiled the look of the main building. The £34 million master plan was designed for the 281-acre estate by Brownhill Hayward Brown (BHB). It includes a state-of-the-art ceramics manufacturing facility, contemporary company offices and a significant expansion of the Wedgwood Visitor Centre, which includes a new partnership with the Wedgwood Museum.
THOUSANDS of students across North Staffordshire are celebrating after picking up their A-level results. Several schools and colleges are reporting a record crop of high grades this year. Newcastle-under-Lyme School students were especially delighted to smash through the school's previous records, with an incredible 24.6 per cent of their grades being A*'s.
ALMOST 5,500 people have been moved off unemployment benefit in North Staffordshire and South Cheshire over the last year. In Stoke-on-Trent alone, there are now 2,455 fewer men and women collecting Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) compared to 12 months ago. Newcastle and Stafford boroughs, the Staffordshire Moorlands, and South Cheshire have also seen similar falls.
Keele students are the happiest in the country. A national survey has placed the University first in the country for student satisfaction. The University's exceptionally high overall satisfaction score of 93% exceeds the national average of 86% in the latest National Student Survey and places Keele in its highest ever position - above the likes of Oxford, Cambridge and the Open University.