The UK’s national shortage of lorry drivers has seen some supermarkets start to advertise jobs on the road with wages up to nearly £57,000 a year.
According to reports in Birmingham Live and The Times, hauliers have warned that there is currently a shortfall of around 100,000 lorry drivers out of a pre-pandemic total of about 600,000 – which has lead to highly-publicised scenes of empty shop shelves up and down the country.
This has been driven by a combination of both post-EU Brexit rules, and thousands of European drivers leaving during the pandemic and not returning.
“High numbers” of workers retiring is also said to be a contributing factor, with 55 being the average age of a HGV driver in the UK.
Gist – a logistics company that delivers for Tesco, M&S, Aldi, Morrisons and Ocado – is offering annual pay of up to £56,674 for LGV drivers, and the scarcity of delivery staff has also seen Waitrose up its wages to £53,780, plus a whopping £1,000 joining bonus.
The supermarket chain says it has put up the pay for truckers by an average of £7,000 in the past 18 months.
Tesco and Iceland has also bumped up salaries by up to 25%, with sign up bonuses of at least £1,000, and M&S also has a joining incentive of £2,000.
James Clifford – boss of HGTVtraining.co.uk – said new recruits could make up to £60,000 a year.
A lorry driver earning £53,780 a year would be making more than the average salary for secondary school teachers (£40,880), solicitors (£43,190), and architects (£42,930) – the Road Haulage Association have said the “substantial” pay rises offered by firms in need of new drivers could force supermarket bosses to pass the costs on to customers.
The UK government introduced a seasonal worker visa scheme in December for 30,000 workers, which was primarily for the summer fruit picking season – but meat processors were excluded.
Rod McKenzie – Managing Director of Policy and Public Affairs at the Road Haulage Association – said the shortage of drivers needs urgent government action, and firms have offered better incentives and pay deals to secure potential recruits.
“Certainly drivers’ pay is increasing, often by quite substantial amounts,” he said.
“This in turn is a cost that will need to be passed on, and given the tight profit margins of most haulage operators, that means their rates to customers will have to go up.
“In turn, this may mean more of us paying higher prices for goods, services and shopping – including food prices – going forward.”
Featured Image – pxhere
Football fans call out ‘tone-deaf’ FA TikTok for mocking ‘life-threatening’ head injury
Football fans are calling out the official FA Cup TikTok account for mocking a serious head injury suffered by a Stockport County player earlier this week.
The Hatters beat Charlton Athletic in fine fashion with a 3-1 victory on Wednesday, 7 December, with Will Collar’s hattrick (the club’s first since 2019) sending them through to the next round of the cup.
However, another notable moment from the night was right back Macauley Southam-Hales’ collision with advertising hoarders after a shove from Charlton captain George Dobson.
As the likes of County fan Joel Ward wrote on Twitter, many online were quick to slam the clip for joking about an injury that hospitalised the player, the consensus being that it isn’t a “great look” for the FA.
While many reacting in the comments recognised that Dobson didn’t intend to hurt Southam-Hales by shepherding the ball out of play, the Stockport defender does hit the predominantly metal structure with some force and was left in clear discomfort following the smash.
The video itself has since been removed from the official account following the backlash but people are still reacting as the clip continues to be reshared on social media.
The clip was branded as everything from “disgusting” and “disgraceful” to “simply unbelievable”.
What’s most concerning is that despite the recent push to promote awareness surrounding concussions, brain trauma and even heading the ball – which, historically, haven’t been properly monitored in football – whoever posted the video on behalf of the FA didn’t consider the very serious nature of the incident.
As alluded to above, perhaps what makes the post even more shocking and tone-deaf is that it comes just weeks after Bath City player forward Alex Fletcher was placed in intensive care following an almost identical accident.
The 23-year-old underwent life-saving brain surgery and although he has since been discharged from the hospital, he is said to have a “long road to recovery ahead of him”.
County confirmed that despite being the all-clear pitchside, Southam-Hales was taken to the hospital as a precaution after he suffered significant swelling around the neck area. Nevertheless, as we know all too well, it could have been much worse.
As for the FA, they have now apologised for the inappropriate attempt at humour, confirming that they have removed the video from all official accounts, admitting that “it should never have been published and assuring that they will “review [their] processes to ensure this never happens again.”
You can watch the full highlights from Stockport County vs Charlton Athletic HERE but we’d recommend you watch Alan Shearer reminding everyone who plays football to be more vigilant when it comes to head injuries.
Sleep researchers will send you FREE CHEESE if you take part in this new sleep study
Scientists currently researching how cheese affects our sleeping patterns are looking for people to take part in a new study.
The best bit? You’ll actually get sent loads of free cheese if you sign up.
New research has found that, while nearly a third of Brits say cheese is one of their favourite foods – and honestly, who can blame us? – almost a quarter of have actually avoided eating it too late into the evening cheese for fear it’ll give them nightmares or vivid dreams.
Out of people who reported they’ve had vivid dreams or nightmares after eating cheese, 70% said it was cheddar they’d been eating, 40% said mozzarella, and 35% said brie.
But, to actually test whether this old wives’ tale is true or just a myth, popular sleep company Emma is calling on people to join a new sleep-science experiment in which they’ll get the chance to eat their favourite cheeses for 15 days, all to test the effects of the cheesy goodness on our sleep quality and dreams.
So, how does it work then? Well, teaming up with cheesegeek, Emma will send selected participants a hamper consisting of three types of delicious British festive cheeses, along with a guide on how much of it to eat before going to bed.
They’ll then be asked to record their dreams to be analysed by the Emma sleep research team.
Putting a call out for people to take part in this cheesy test, Theresa Schnorbach – Sleep Scientist at Emma – said: “When it comes to cheese, we know there are elements at work that can have both a positive and negative impact on our sleep – from increasing your REM sleep density to inducing hormone production which aids in regulating your body clock.
“Through this experiment, we’ll explore the extent of these elements and put this old wives’ tale to the test.”
With Christmas – and cheese board season – fast approaching, the research also found that 32% Brits eat more cheese over the festive period compared to any other time of year, and just over one in seven said that they find they get less sleep over the Christmas period – with over a quarter (27%) admitting their sleep lessening around the festive period could be linked to their cheese intake at the time.
The types of festive cheeses provided in the experiment were all found to be some of the most popularly consumed around Christmas.