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Funding will bolster 600 apprenticeships in building services

One fifth of all places in the £11 million apprenticeship initiative announced by Government this week will be in building services.

The £11m Apprenticeship Expansion Programme will cover the training of around 3,000 new apprentices over the next two years and one fifth – 600 places – will be in the building services sector.

JTL, a building services trainer than leans towards electrical work, has been tasked with placing an extra 400 apprentices in the next two years while BEST, a trainer leaning towards mechanical work, has been tasked with placing an additional 200 apprentices.

Nearly 60 per cent of the £11m funding will be targeted towards 16 to 18-year-olds with the majority of the remaining support going to support 19 to 24-year-old apprenticeships.

JTL will give an extra £30 per week to selected employers for every extra apprentice they employ if they qualify for the Apprenticeship Expansion Scheme,

JTL will target employers who have an excellent proven track record in providing high quality apprentices and need support during the downturn to expand their numbers.

JTL Chief Executive Denis Hird said: “We work with employers with a terrific track record in training up young people and winning this contract reflects the Government’s confidence in JTL’s expertise in delivering Advanced Apprenticeships in the building services industry.”

BEST chief executive, Mark Brenner added: “The first year in post is recognised as the least productive and hardest for the employer so we will provide extra funding during this period.

“We have had a favourable response so far and we are assessing employers to see if they genuinely can’t afford to take on apprentices before considering them for this scheme.”

He added: “This is a fantastic endorsement and recognition of the opportunities within our sector and its importance to the growing skills landscape.

“The use of apprenticeships as part of a developing workforce has been shown to create overall labour savings of 10-15 per cent on a typical M&E contract.”