Norfolk - the Asia of the UK

A report produced by the Financial Times (FT) earlier this year on "Doing Business in the East Of England" reveals some interesting views on our region but one quote in an article about the knowledge economy catches one's attention.

“Norfolk is a great place to be and the cost of living is much lower than in London, so we can offer our clients cost savings when compared with a London-based operation, says Ivan Skoric, TSL’s managing director.
“There’s no need for them to outsource to Asia or eastern Europe to get high quality work at reduced costs. I call it ‘offshoring, onshore’.”

Let 's hope that the peasants never revolt and start demanding better wages - what ever will become of us then?.


  1. This sounds like exploitation to me! No wonder we need 40% affordable housing at Rackheath - no-one will earn enough to ever afford to buy their own home! Every job I go for there are hundreds of other people applying too. It seems like everyone in Norfolk is applying for the same jobs regardless of their qualifications. It's all a bit scary and we certainly don't want to be taken advantage of - we'll never be able to afford to move anywhere else at this rate if the job situation gets worse.

  2. Yes, Norfolk is not yet concreted over, so there is room for "growth" (i.e. profits for a few, traffic jams for the rest and death for both farmland and wild places which means death of habitat with only vermin and noxious plants left). "Gateway" housing is being constructed - a particularly nasty shock is a visit to the Queen's Hills conglomeration of shoddy and not very cheap housing, just south of Costessey and Drayton.

    A few things are strong enough to stop this. International Law is one - but no-one is using it. Another is simply a recession - this could work. As the FT pointed out a few days ago:

    "The nascent recovery in the house building market appears to have ground to a halt as a leading industry survey, which measures the number of people reserving new homes to buy, dropped to its lowest level on record.
    The survey, conducted weekly by the Home Builders Federation, is for internal use only and is regarded by the industry as the best guide to housing demand.
    But its latest report, seen by the Financial Times, shows that deposits on new properties have dropped below those recorded in 2008, the nadir of the market.
    The HBF declined to comment.
    The chief executive of one of the UK’s largest housebuilders said the data were “worrying, highly significant and consistent with a falling market”.
    In the five weeks through late August, the total net reservations were 3,353, 5 per cent lower than in the 2008 housing market and 22 per cent lower than at the same time in 2009 when house prices were recovering strongly.
    Such a sharp drop in new housing demand is a poor omen for house prices generally and for broader economic activity.
    Estate agents say there are signs of a glut of existing homes for sale. Peter Hayward, director of Hayward Tod Associates in Carlisle, Cumbria, said that in his area, the number of homes for sale was around 40 per cent higher than a year earlier."

    If you go to the HBF website, you will see no hint of all this - as the FT says, the figures on reservation of new homes are for internal use only. But shouldn't someone alert all our Councils to this survey for construction industry eyes only? - we don't want to end up with masses of ghost housing developments like Ireland.

    It is no good building for a population headed for 70 million if there aren't jobs and no-one can afford to buy the homes anyway, or afford to run the car which is essential if you live in one of these artificial places. Instead the population will have to be reduced to fit existing jobs, and existing national food production. Or there will be civil unrest, won't there? Hope our councils are ready for this, if they want to import thousands of people who won't be able to afford to pay their council tax or any other taxes - and lots of council staff will be losing their jobs themselves won't they, so will other people already here.

    So if newcomers do have jobs, they will be queue-jumping, won't they? Not a great recipe for Well Being of any kind - but the Local Government Act 2000 enforces Social, Environmental and Economic Well Being as the first duty of all local authorities.