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Number of road and rail apprentices soars


The number of apprentices working on Britain’s roads and railways is soaring.  

The ‘Transport Infrastructure Skills Strategy – Two Years on’ report shows that 2,784 road and rail apprentices started training in 2017/18, a 22% year-on-year increase.

Government and transport bodies are praised in the report for addressing the skills gap by creating high quality apprenticeships and encouraging young people to consider engineering as a career.

The strategy was created to increase apprenticeships and improve diversity in transport.

There has also been a 35% increase in Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic (BAME) representation in the engineering industry since 2016, according to the report.

Despite efforts made by Strategic Transport Apprenticeship Taskforce (STAT) to encourage women into the engineering industry, the fact that women only make up 20% of the industry has not changed since the strategy began in 2016.

Nusrat Ghani, Skills and Apprenticeship Minister, has commented on the issue of lack of women in engineering:

“Although we are seeing evidence of better BAME representation in the sector, our ambitions are clear. From road to rail, maritime to aviation, we must all redouble our efforts to bring more women into technical and engineering roles and remove barriers, ensuring we bring talented people from all backgrounds together to tackle the skills gap.”

The strategy’s future targets include creating an additional 8,000 opportunities every year in the express delivery sector, aiming for training places for maritime cadets to rise to 1,200 over the next seven years and providing that Heathrow is given the go-ahead creating 10,000 apprenticeships before 2030.

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