STROUD MP Neil Carmichael has welcomed figures that show unemployment in Stroud has fallen to 1.7 per cent.

Claimant figures for last month, released by the Office for National Statistics, show unemployment as a whole fell to 1.7 per cent while youth unemployment is down to 3.7 per cent.

Across the Valleys and Vale unemployment is down to 880 claimants from 1,280 in April last year, indicating that 400 people have found work over the past 12 months.

Youth unemployment, by comparison, stood at 5.8 per cent in April last year.

Mr Carmichael said: “This new data showing that unemployment has dropped yet again is great news for the Stroud Valleys and Vale.

"The British economy is on the up, and manufacturing in Stroud continues to grow stronger. With these figures as well, all indications are that the Government’s long term economic plan is working.”

Recently the Prime Minister visited Renishaw at its Woodchester site and last week Mayor of London Boris Johnson opened the new Lister Shearing factory in Stonehouse.

They both praised the manufacturing companies in the district - a sector which makes up 24 per cent of the jobs across the constituency.