Haringey people are being given first dibs to take around 150 new jobs created at the Sainsbury’s superstore due to open as part of Tottenham Hotspur’s redevelopment plan – with a further 100 in the pipeline.

The 250 jobs are reserved for people living within three miles of the store, on the corner of Tottenham High Road and Northumberland Park. It is the first tranche of new jobs to come out of the club’s Northumberland Development Project (NDP) which is transforming north Tottenham.

Spurs is working with Sainsbury’s, Haringey Council and Job Centre Plus to offer training workshops and guidance to unemployed local people to help them prepare for interviews and put together a CV, and Sainsbury’s has provided job role profiles and staff handbooks so applicants know what is expected of them.

The store is also training the disabled, long-term unemployed and youth offenders to take jobs under its You Can programme.

The first 40 jobs have been filled already, and workshops are under way with more prospective applicants for the second lot of jobs before the store opens in early November. The full 250 jobs will be filled over a three-year period, although more senior roles will be filled by applicants outside the three-mile radius if the necessary expertise cannot be found within it.

director Jacki Connor and Grant Cornwell, chief executive of the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation. Picture: Action Images/Jed Leicester

Spurs chairman Daniel Levy said: “We are determined to see the jobs created by the Northumberland Development Project go to local people.

“The club already does a great deal to try and ensure that people in our communities can gain skills and employment through things such as our apprenticeship programmes and we shall ensure that all the new opportunities are not missed by local people and that the regeneration really does deliver employment and socio-economic benefits to our local community.”

In less than two months, the partnership has provided employment support and advice to more than 500 Tottenham residents interested in the roles at the new Sainsbury’s superstore, which will be the largest in the country. A series of jobs fairs and community fun days were also attended by several hundred people.

The scheme is bringing badly-needed support and jobs to the immediate vicinity; Northumberland Park ward has the second-highest rate of work-age people claiming Job Seekers’ Allowance in London, at 11.5 per cent. Only 61.2 per cent of all Tottenham residents are in employment, a figure in the bottom 10 per cent in England.

“We do this because we have got football in our business and we feel we have got a responsibility to use that as best we can in the community.”

Donna-Marie Cullen, executive director, Tottenham Hotspur FC

Iain Duncan Smith, secretary of state for work and pensions, had to cancel his appearance at the jobs announcement at Spurs’ ground last Thursday, but praised the scheme.

He said: “I’m proud to be involved with this exciting project, which has really rejuvenated the area, bringing scores of new job opportunities and hope for local people in this part of north London.

“Creating new local jobs in Tottenham is a great way of bringing back a renewed sense of optimism and community in the area. It means that people who want to do the right thing and move back into work will have the opportunity to do so and not only support their local community but support themselves and their families. The benefits of this cannot be underestimated.”

The Department for Work and Pensions has paid to kit out a “digivan” with PCs which will visit parts of Tottenham, including the Broadwater Farm Estate, to allow people to create or update their CVs. It will be operated by the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, also acting as a “mobile recruitment vehicle”, said Donna-Maria Cullen, Spurs’ executive director.

She added: “What everyone tends to forget is that while Tottenham Hotspur is huge… last year it posted a loss. We do this because we have got football in our business and we feel we have got a responsibility to use that as best we can in the community.”

Leader of Haringey Council, Cllr Claire Kober, said: “This ground-breaking partnership shows how, together, we can create real jobs and opportunities for our residents.

“This is just the beginning of our long-term ambitions to deliver thousands of new employment opportunities to Tottenham. Local people are at the heart of our plans as we bring new jobs, modern homes, and a better mix of shops to Tottenham and secure its future.”

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