Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Beate Klarsfeld: 'It was our duty to bring Nazis to justice'

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Novak Djokovic: 'I have grown'

Read more

ACCESS ASIA

Rescuing India's lost children

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Mexican taxi drivers protest rise of Uber

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'A calamitous choice'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

All work and no play

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Dance like nobody's watching!

Read more

DEBATE

Burundi's brutal standoff: One month on, tension spirals (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Burundi's brutal standoff: One month on, tension spirals (part 1)

Read more

An in-depth report by our senior reporters and team of correspondents from around the world. Every Saturday at 9.10 pm Paris time.

REPORTERS

REPORTERS

Latest update : 2011-12-13

United Kingdom: public services for sale

In Newcastle, in the North East of England, one in three workers is a civil servant. The city has been particularly hard hit by the economic crisis and resulting cuts to public services. In this city already affected by unemployment due to the collapse of traditional industries, FRANCE 24 went to meet locals who are steeling themselves for even harder times ahead.

“It’s all gone to waste,” laments Derek as he revisits the site of his first job at a shipyard on the river Tyne. He was 16 when he left school and went in search of work. Now 39 and unemployed, he says it’s tough finding work in a region where traditional industries have collapsed.

The North East of England has long born the brunt of hard times in the country.

Now, as the British economy stagnates, the fear is that the Tyneside region is again in the firing line.

In a city centre famed for its hedonistic nightlife, some pubs and bars are closing their doors for good. “People don’t want to spend money on nights out when they need it for their bills,” says 22-year-old IT worker James.

He tells us government cuts are making his job with the local authority harder and harder. On November 30th, he joined hundreds of thousands of public sector workers in the biggest strike action in decades, as unions took to the streets against pension reform.

The government says that it has no option but to save money and attack the deficit. But in a region where one in three workers hold public sector posts, there’s a feeling ordinary people are paying for the excesses of the bankers.

For nurse and union activist Maddy, the strike is about more than just pensions. She’s angry at decades of creeping privatisation in the National Health Service. “What are we going to leave for our children?” she wonders.

France 24’s Chris Moore and Alix Le Bourdon travelled to the area around Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, to sample the atmosphere at a time of strikes, cuts and vanishing job opportunities.

By Christopher MOORE , Alix LE BOURDON

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2015-05-21 Thailand

A year after coup, Thai opposition resists junta rule

On May 22 last year, Thailand’s military seized control of the country after months of protests against the democratically elected government of Yingluck Shinawatra. Since then,...

Read more

2015-05-14 Jacques Chirac

Are there lessons to be learned from Chirac’s foreign policy?

20 years after Jacques Chirac was voted into power, how should we view the foreign policy of a president who famously said "non" to the US war on terror?

Read more

2015-05-08 Colombia

Colombia’s toxic war on drugs

Colombia is one of the world’s largest cocaine-producing countries. To fight coca production and weaken the FARC guerrilla, whose main source of revenue is narcotics trafficking,...

Read more

2015-04-30 Syria

Syria: On the trail of looted antiquities

As the war in Syria enters its fifth year, the trafficking of looted antiquities is adding a new dimension to the tragic conflict. Many Syrian artefacts are smuggled across the...

Read more

2015-04-24 World War I

Saving French soldiers' WWI trench carvings

In 1914, a former underground quarry in Picardy in northern France is requisitioned by the French army. For almost four years, hundreds of soldiers were stationed there. Many...

Read more