The year-on-year decline in construction apprenticeships threatens the
UK’s economic recovery and the ability to build back better from the
coronavirus pandemic, says the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) in
response to the Department for Education’s apprenticeship and
traineeship data released today [1].

Brian Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB, said: “The Government must
reverse the sharp fall in construction apprenticeships by giving
builders a greater voice in local skills plans and by supporting
builders and colleges to work better together. That 3,000 fewer
apprentices started in the first half of the 2020/21 academic year than
did so the year before makes for difficult reading. This will exacerbate
the skills shortage, and hamper construction’s ability to do its bit
to build back better.”

Berry concluded: “As we emerge from the coronavirus pandemic and
implement the UK’s new points-based immigration system, skills and
training in key sectors, such as construction, should be at the
forefront of the Government’s mind. As local builders train 71% of
apprentices in the industry, they must be at the heart of plans to bring
in the next generation of tradespeople.”