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Thousands swamp Canary Wharf jobs fair looking for work

PUBLISHED: 19:40 13 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:03 05 October 2010

Queues all day waiting to get into the jobs fair

Queues all day waiting to get into the jobs fair

ORGANISERS of a one-day jobs fair in East London have been swamped today as 10,000 jobseekers joined the scramble for work. Huge queues formed all day outside Canary Wharf's East Wintergarden where employers set up stalls

By John Hyde

ORGANISERS of a one-day jobs fair in East London have been swamped today as thousands of jobseekers joined the scramble for work.

Huge queues formed all day outside Canary Wharf’s East Wintergarden venue where major organisations from the public and private sectors set up stalls at the fair organised by Tower Hamlets council.

Demand was so great that by 3.30pm there were no extra people allowed to join the long queue as they would not have time to look round before the 7pm closing.

Council cabinet member Oliur Rahman, the local authority’s lead member for employment, said: “We didn’t anticipate there would be so much interested and so many people.

“If we’d known, we would have gone to a bigger venue. It just shows people are desperate to find jobs if they’re prepared to wait two-and-a-half hours.”

Queues tailed back to Westferry Road, blocking shops and office premises, with businesses having to call in security guards to clear a path.

Firms recruiting included Tesco, Asda, Waitrose and Argos, as well as public sector organisations like the Met Police, London Fire Brigade, London Olympics 2012 and Tower Hamlets Council itself.

The fair was held on the day that Government figures revealed the newly-created Poplar & Limehouse constituency, which includes Canary Wharf and the Isle of Dogs, has the third-highest number of jobless in the country.

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