Goldthorpe Job Centre to close

JOBSEEKERS in Goldthorpe will face a bus ride of around 20 minutes to their nearest Job Centre after the government announced plans to close the village’s branch.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) said Goldthorpe was one of 78 smaller JobCentre Plus offices to merge into larger ones — meaning people will have to travel to the Mexborough branch.

But John Healey, MP for Wentworth and Dearne, said the government’s plans showed a “lack of understanding at how little spare cash many have”.

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Mr Healey said: “The Goldthorpe Jobcentre provides vital job search help and benefits for local people. 

“Many will find it much harder and more costly to get this support if the government close the Goldthorpe office. 

“Ministers simply saying Mexborough’s not far away and people can get on a bus is no answer for those that depend on this service and shows a total lack of understanding about how little spare cash many have. 

“The front-line staff are committed to the community and know the area. This helps them do a tough job better. 

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“I will challenge this closure, and argue the case to keep our job centre in Goldthorpe in the heart of the Dearne. 

“This is the final insult from Tory ministers to a proud mining village. The last Conservative government threw a generation on the dole when they closed the pits, now they’re closing the JobCentre itself. 

“Tory Ministers are behaving like big bank bosses - they’re both closing local offices and turning their back on local people who depend on their service.”

The DWP said the proposals would save around £180 million a year for the next ten years.

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Damian Hinds, employment minster, said: “The way the world works has changed rapidly in the last 20 years and the welfare state needs to keep pace. 

“As more people access their benefits through the Internet many of our buildings are under-used. We are concentrating our resources on what we know best helps people into work.”