UNEMPLOYMENT in North Yorkshire has fallen to a new low.

Latest figures show that only 791 York people claimed Jobseeker's Allowance in June - or 0.6 per cent of those eligible - compared with 889 or 0.7 per cent in May.

The figures contrasts sharply with 1,577, or 1.2 per cent of those eligible, in June last year and with 3,464, or 2.7 per cent, in June 2010.

In North Yorkshire, the number of claimants fell to 3,010 or 0.8 per cent in June, down from 3,248 or 0.9 per cent in May, and from 4,606 or 1.3 per cent in June last year and from 8,601 or 2.3 per cent in June 2010.

It was a similar story in East Riding of Yorkshire, where 2,959 people, or 1.5 per cent of those eligible, claimed JSA in June, down from 3,050 in May and 3,966, or 2.0 per cent, in June last year.

In Ryedale, the number of claimants fell from 232 in May to 204, or 0.7 per cent, in June, which contrasts with 339 in June last year.

In the Selby district, the number fell from 781 in to 746 in June, or 1.4 per cent, and down from 906 in June.

Across the whole of Britain, 1.7 per cent of those eligible are claiming JSA, while the figure for Yorkshire and The Humber as a whole is 2.4 per cent.

JobCentre Plus spokeswoman Michelle Taylor said many employers in York were recruiting for tourism-related work in restaurants, bars and cafes, and her organisation was helping unemployed people prepare for such work through pre-employment training in hospitality skills, and it was also involved in a traineeship programme to help people prepare for apprenticeships.

York Outer Tory MP Julian Sturdy said he was delighted by the continuing fall in unemployment, which was a key part of plans to re-balance the economy and end the historic North-South divide.

"However, much remains to be done, particularly to boost productivity, as the Chancellor identified in the summer Budget last week," he added.

York Central Labour MP Rachael Maskell said she welcomed a reduction in the number of people unemployed but warned: "Like all statistics, these ones need to be treated with caution.

"The figures only show the number of people receiving Jobseeker's Allowance on a particular day in the month. People who have received a sanction are not included in the figures, nor are partners of claimants or people who do not sign on because they are not entitled to any benefits."

Cllr Keith Aspden, Lib Dem Deputy Leader of City of York Council, said partnership working across the city was helping to keep unemployment low and defy a national trend, which had seen the number of jobseekers increase in the last quarter.