The year-on-year decline in construction apprenticeships threatens the Prime Minister’s levelling-up agenda and the UK’s ability to ‘build back better’ from the pandemic, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) in response to the Department for Education’s apprenticeship and traineeship data released today.
Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB, said: “2,000 fewer new apprenticeships is the opposite of what is needed to tackle the critical skills shortage in the construction industry. In particular, it won’t help small building companies. Currently 38% of Master Builder companies are already struggling to hire bricklayers and 34% are unable to recruit carpenters.”
Berry concluded: “The Government’s levelling-up agenda is at risk if support to encourage and incentivise careers in construction isn’t turbo-charged. Small builders would particularly welcome an extension to the heightened incentive payments for those businesses training apprentices beyond September of this year.”
Notes to editors
The Federation of Master Builders (FMB) is the largest trade association in the UK construction industry representing thousands of firms in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Established in 1941 to protect the interests of small and medium-sized (SME) construction firms, the FMB is independent and non-profit making, lobbying for members’ interests at both the national and local level.
The FMB is a source of knowledge, professional advice and support for its members, providing a range of modern and relevant business building services to help them succeed. The FMB is committed to raising quality in the construction industry and offers a free Find a Builder service to consumers.