One in five Plymouth homes have no worker
ONE-in-five homes in Plymouth have no-one with a job, stark official figures have revealed.
Some 19 per cent of homes in both Plymouth and Cornwall were deemed "workless" according to the Office for National Statistics.
In the Devon county area, the rate was 15.7 per cent of homes with adults below pension age not having a job last year.
Torbay appears to have been the worst victim of the recession in Devon and Cornwall, with 20.6 per cent of households deemed "workless".
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But while the numbers paint a grim picture of the jobs market in the Westcountry, they appear to be improving modestly.
The figure for all four areas was lower than a year earlier and below the post-recession peak.
In Torbay, 25.2 per cent of homes were workless in 2010, and Plymouth's rate hit 21.6 per cent a year earlier.
Cornwall was as high as 22.1 per cent in 2010 and Devon peaked at 18.5 in the same year.
Some parts of the region have the lowest rates of household worklessness in the country. In Exeter, just 8.7 per cent of homes have no-one in employment and the rate is 9.6 per cent in Mid Devon.
Nationally, worklessness was highest in Glasgow (30.2 per cent), Liverpool (28.7 per cent) and Hull (27.6 per cent).
Overall, 28 per cent of people in jobless households said they were out of work because they were sick or disabled.
Some 20 per cent were unemployed, 18 per cent had retired early, 16 per cent were looking after their family or home and 13 per cent were studying.
However, there are a greater proportion of early retirees in the South West than nationally, underlining how the region is a magnet for people when they quit work.
Some 24 per cent of "workless" homes in South West attribute their status to retirement – the highest of any region in the UK.
By contrast, the figure is just 11.4 per cent in London.