Boris Johnson declares ‘mission’ to generate jobs for young people on visit to Ilford Town Centre

Help is at hand for young people seeking work, according to Mayor of London Boris Johnson on his visit to Ilford Town Centre earlier today.

Ahead of the election on May 3, Mr Johnson visited Barnabas Workshops, High Road, Ilford where job seekers in Redbridge are helped to achieve and retain employment.

Meeting with tutors and apprentices Mr Johnson declared that “things are starting to improve” in the employment sector, noting that construction is an industry that can provide a plethora of work opportunities.

He said: “I always love coming to Redbridge and I think today has been incredibly encouraging, because we are seeing really good schemes to give young people the confidence and skills they need to get jobs.

“We’ve done 54,000 apprenticeships already, we’re going to do up to 100,000 by the end of the year and we’re going to do 250,000 in the next four years.”

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“This will get young people from Redbridge able to compete and to take the jobs that are going because there will be jobs. That’s the mission.”

Carpentry tutor Peter Sheen, 60, met with Mr Johnson to discuss apprenticeships and how job seekers in Redbridge can gain career skills.

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He said: “Working with Barnabas and Redbridge, we have a group of about 15 job seekers who are completing a 16 week course.

“People who have been out of work sometimes lose a bit of life confidence and we can gradually see it coming back.

“Boris was excellent, I always find him a colourful character and he seemed really interested.”

Havering and Redbridge London Assembly member Roger Evans joined Mr Johnson for the visit, accompanied by council leader Cllr Keith Prince and Cranbrook ward Cllr Mahboob Chaudhary.

Countless shoppers and commuters braved the rain to meet the mayor as he made his way into Exchange Ilford, High Road before boarding a train at Ilford Station, Cranbrook Road.

Before his departure, he added: “Last time I was here was for the Queen’s visit, which was wonderful. I don’t know what’s happened since then. I blame the government, as soon as they announce a drought we get this awful rain.”

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