Hereford & Worcester

Agricultural sectors boost resilience in Herefordshire

Herefordshire has the most resilient business sectors in the West Midlands and is 10th in a national list, BBC-commissioned research suggests.

The county's agricultural, fishing, forestry and banking sectors are faring well despite the tough economic climate, data has shown.

The government will announce its spending review on 20 October.

The BBC commissioned Experian to assess how resilient each English council region is to economic shocks.

The study revealed that, nationally, Redditch has the third highest number of firms that export goods abroad and, regionally, has the fourth highest number of businesses with foreign parent companies.

However, the town has had the 11th highest number of insolvencies in England over the past nine months.

Life expectancy for men in Bromsgrove is high and is joint highest in the BBC West Midlands region along with Warwick.

Worcester has a very low proportion of working-age people who are self employed - 304th lowest out of 324 nationally.

But the city comes 84th nationally and sixth regionally for its number of high growth sectors - projected by Experian to be key, high growth areas.

Wyre Forest performs badly for the proportion of students obtaining five or more A* to C GCSE grades, coming last regionally and 303rd nationally.

Resilience: Full Data

DownloadExperian resilience data - in full[645kb]

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Malvern Hills, Bromsgrove and the county of Herefordshire are all in the top 10 for good social cohesion - people were asked do neighbours look out for each other.

Chancellor George Osborne will outline his spending review on 20 October.

Lord Digby Jones, former chief of the CBI, told BBC News that private sector workers - who have taken pay cuts to try to keep their jobs - were "fed up" with the public sector, which he said had to face up to the government cuts.

BBC Hereford and Worcester is hosting a debate on the research from 0900 BST on Friday.

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