County Council welcomes £1 million grant for new Apprenticeship Hub

Hampshire County Council has welcomed news that a £1 million grant has been awarded by the European Union’s Structural and Investment Fund to create an ‘Apprenticeship Hub’ in the Solent region

Nov 22 2018

This Hampshire wide partnership, to be led by Southampton City Council, will raise local employer awareness of the benefits of Apprenticeships in meeting their skills and business needs. The Hub will support young people and residents to access Apprenticeships.

Councillor Stephen Reid, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Education and Skills, Human Resources and Performance, said: “This is excellent news and will really help to increase awareness of and support for Apprenticeships, not only in the Solent region but across the whole of Hampshire.

“Apprenticeships are fantastic for developing the skills and knowledge needed as the first step to a career and lifelong employment and, ultimately, improve economic prosperity locally. They are also invaluable for people who want to re-skill and take their careers in new directions.

“The creation of the Apprenticeship Hub will be a real boost to the resources and support that are available, which includes the range of world class technical training facilities that  exist across the county, including the Centre of Excellence in Engineering, Manufacturing and Advanced Skills Training (CEMAST) in Fareham and the Future Skills Centre in East Hampshire – two flagship facilities that the County Council has delivered, with support from local and national partners.”

In 2017 the Government announced the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy and an intention to increase the recruitment of Apprentices to a total of three million by 2020. The new Apprenticeship Hub aims to drive up the number of Apprenticeships available in the area and, in doing so, increase productivity for businesses and opportunities for local people.

Following the Government’s recent announcement of a £95 million package of reforms to ensure the Apprenticeship Levy provides people with the skills they need to succeed, the Apprenticeship Hub will help businesses to take full advantage of the benefits of employing Apprentices, and to help as many people as possible find the right training to equip them for the future.

The £1 million funding will be matched by contributions from the partner organisations, totalling a further £1 million. The partners are: Hampshire County Council, Southampton City Council, Hampshire Chamber of Commerce, The Association of Learning Providers for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight (ALPHI), EBP South, Portsmouth City Council, Solent University and the University of Portsmouth.