West Bromwich is a large town in the centre of the West Midlands, with an estimated population of 137,000. In the 19th century, it grew rapidly as a successful manufacturing and mining centre, when it became known as the Black Country along with Wolverhampton, Walsall and Dudley.
In more modern times, it continues to thrive with the development and production of glass, leather, plastics and rubber, which employ a significant number of staff. There is also a high proportion of workers employed in the electronics, telecommunications, food, and drink industries. The retail sector is also becoming more important in employment terms, although the public sector is the mainstay of the local economy. The biggest employer in the area is Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council (8,400 employees), whilst Sandwell Primary Care Trust employs around 13,000 staff. The distribution and logistics sector also provides many jobs in the town, at locations like Nightspeed, which employs almost 1,000 people. The average annual salary for a full-time employee is around £32,000.
A huge amount of investment is earmarked for a major redevelopment of the town centre, as well as ring road improvements, new courts, colleges, and supermarkets, which recruitment agencies expect will create hundreds of new jobs within West Bromwich.