This village brainwave could be just the job

12-349   Work experience welcomed by these Kings Langley businessmen  and women.
12-349 Work experience welcomed by these Kings Langley businessmen and women.

A NEW plan to give jobseekers valuable work experience which has been created by business owners in Kings Langley could be rolled out across the county.

The scheme will see people receiving Jobseeker’s Allowance carry out mandatory work activity in a range of village shops over a two-week period, providing them with a range of valuable skills.

These could include how to carve a joint of meat, how to sell a house, sales experience, mechanical skills and much more.

Jeff Folkins, who runs the delicatessen and wine merchant Dalling & Co in the village with his wife Claire Carpentier, is one of the brains behind the idea along with Richard Smith, owner of the Langley Butcher.

Jeff said: “It occurred to Richard and myself that it would be a great idea if we could get those looking for work to spend their time doing a work placement in our shops.

“Yes, they would have to work hard – but in the process they could pick up a range of skills from a selection of different types of businesses.”

The idea was put forward to Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning in February.

He loved the idea and took it to the government’s employment minister Chris Grayling.

Jeff added: “Chris thought the idea was great and that it could also work elsewhere, and since then we’ve also been in talks with the Jobcentre bosses for the county.”

The first work experience placements are now scheduled to go ahead early next month.

And if they prove successful, the idea is likely to be introduced to other villages and high streets across Hertfordshire.