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£1k for firms to employ apprentices

The Government is to offer construction firms grants of up to £1,000 if they take on apprentices who have been made redundant before they finished their training.

ConstructionSkills, the UK’s Sector Skills Council for construction, sucessfully lobbied the National Apprenticeship Service to secure £1 million to help support the industry and encourage employers to take on trainees by offering financial support.

Firms can access the funding by using the ConstructionSkills’ Apprenticeship Matching Service, which matches apprentices that have been made redundant with firms in need of staff.

ConstructionSkills apprenticeship programme manager, Nigel Donohue said: “We have been talking to the Government in recent months about the need to support employers in our industry through this difficult time and the funding from the National Apprenticeship Service will do just that.

“£1,000 for each apprentice adopted through the AMS will make the proposition more viable for employers.”

Construction companies are being encouraged to provide employment to displaced apprentices, but they can also access support if they are struggling to afford to keep their current apprentices in work.

NAS chief executive Simon Waugh said: “In these challenging times and particularly as we prepare for the upturn, apprenticeships are a vital way of improving the skills of staff and generating a committed and valuable workforce.”