1,459 now out of work in borough

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The number of people registering as out of work in Ballymena saw an increase in the past month, up 26.

According to the latest figures from the Department of Enterprise, the claimant count in the borough now stands at 1,459, compared to 1,433 in August.

Wards within the borough registering the most claimant counts for unemployment in September were Ballee with 123 (99 in August), Dunclug with 114 (112 in August), and Ballykeel with 111 (107 the previous month).

The ward with the lowest claimant count last month was Ballyloughan with 21, down two from August (23).

Province-wide in September, 52,000 people were claiming unemployment related benefits - a decrease of 300 on the previous month.

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster described the latest drop in the number claiming unemployment benefits as “encouraging”.