£22m to plug construction skills gap
The government has launched a £22m fund to tackle the skills gap in the construction industry.
Skills minister Anne Milton presented the new fund today (18 June), with training delivered via 20 on-site hubs.
The fund will also support work experience placements, entry pathways for those currently unemployed, and pathways for those switching career.
The 18-month scheme, which aims to help fill some of the 158,000 construction jobs expected to be created over the next five years, is funded by the Department for Education and will be administered by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).
Milton said: “For our economy to thrive we need everyone, regardless of their age or background, to be able to get the training and the skills they need to make the most of the opportunities that lie ahead.
“The Government has committed to building 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s and we want to make sure that we are investing in the UK skills base to deliver this.”
CITB is now calling on employers, housing associations and other interested bodies such as LEPs and local authorities to submit expressions of interest. These can be from both existing and prospective on-site learning hubs.
The funding will only support on-site training provision, and access to live construction projects is essential to qualify.
Steve Radley, policy director at CITB, said: “The Construction Skills Fund is a milestone scheme for the sector and provides a significant investment in skills and training. It will help attract new talent and bridge the gap between training and working in the industry.
“Having training on or near to major projects will reveal what an exciting sector this can be, while also putting new talent in the shop window.
“We want all interested organisations to submit Expressions of Interest that are innovative, collaborative and with training at their heart. We will support applicants through the process and provide expert guidance to apply to the fund.
“We are pleased to help deliver this major new project and we are confident that, with industry support, it can help meet construction’s skills needs now and in the future.”