Our economic glass half full

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IT seems that we are not able to escape the economic gloom which is haunting the world’s financial markets and spilling out into our everyday lives in the form of job losses, pay freezes and uncertain futures.

But that is far from the full picture and local firms are seeking out plenty of opportunities to grow and give the local economy the much-needed shot in the arm it desperately seeks.

One of them is Barnsley-based C Soar and Sons which is one of only a handful of UK companies capable of recycling massive pieces of electrical plant and which has just announced a £4 million investment plan which promises to create jobs. Meanwhile Massarella Catering Group is also in growth-mode, thanks to support from Barclays Bank. And a subsidiary of locally-based Henry Boot has secured a forward thinking contract to tap into underground heat sources to help cut energy bills of homes being built in North Yorkshire.

These are just some of the success stories which regularly appear on our business pages and which, we believe, show that our economic glass should be seen as half full.

Emergency of overweight folk

IF anyone was in doubt about the need to watch their weight, then today’s story about overweight patients should bring home the message.

For fire and rescue workers in South Yorkshire have had to assist in almost 200 cases in recent years where patients were too heavy to be lifted. In some cases doors and windows had to be removed to allow ambulance crews to take them to hospital.

This must be a terribly distressing experience, particularly for someone in need of medical attention.

And for it to happen so often shows there is a serious trend which must be addressed. And the best person to begin that process is the individual concerned.

Must offer help

IT is with mixed feelings that we learn of the impressive work of Sheffield Youth Achievement Foundation, a charity which has succeeded in rescuing the careers of almost 19 of the 21 young people it dealt with in the last year. This is a highly intensive and expensive operation and will leave some parents wondering why this special treatment for children who have in the main been excluded from mainstream schools. But the success rate shows that these youngsters are not lost causes. There is a chance of a future and, while there are the resources, help must be offered.