Heather Wheeler, MP for South Derbyshire and Minister for Housing and Homelessness at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, today officially launched the Access Training Construction Academy in Derby.
The Academy, a partnership between Access Training (East Midlands) and Derby building firm, Hodgkinson’s, will focus on bricklaying but will also offer a range of other trade apprenticeships. Builder’s merchants, Buildbase, are also co-sponsoring the Academy by providing tools and equipment to support young people at the Academy.
Access Training have pledged to create 10 new apprenticeship vacancies in the run up to the launch with Hodgkinson’s adding a further two. The message from both is clear – despite all the uncertainty surrounding the UK’s exit from the EU, house building is a national priority and construction skills will be much in demand during the years to come.
Making a brief speech at the official launch, Mrs Wheeler said:
“You are actually physically building homes, so I can get my rough sleepers off the street, so I can get vulnerable people into sheltered housing, so I can get older people into appropriate homes so they can downsize and then you’ve got more family homes to free up.
But what I would hope is that that gives you the confidence to start up your businesses, to invest in this world and to bring these young people on.
There will be a huge pipeline (of house building), that means we will have businesses going forward for a very long time.”
Mr Ian Hodgkinson, Director at Hodgkinson’s added:
“What the Academy will provide is life-changing opportunities.
We are taking somebody from school or college or whatever background, diverse areas, and can put somebody in the situation where they are going to be able to earn a living.”