21 LTC apprentices welcomed by The Skills People

The Skills People has welcomed 21 new London Theatre Consortium (LTC) apprentices this week, as they prepare to take on backstage and front of house theatre roles, including working within arts administration.

The apprentices, all aged between 16 and 24, have begun their year-long training as part of an apprenticeship programme for the LTC, a collaboration between 13 leading London theatres. The apprentices are based in all of the LTC theatres and will all be trained by The Skills People, LTC’s training delivery partner.

Over the course of the next two years, 38 young people will complete their apprenticeships with LTC and The Skills People.

The apprentices and representatives from each of the theatres in the consortium attended an induction event at The Skills People’s training facilities at LeSoCo’s campus on The Cut in Waterloo. Over the year-long programme they will have a combination of work-based learning and training, both on theatre premises and at The Skills People’s Waterloo campus.

As well as receiving training, the apprentices will be paid the National Minimum Wage, rather than the lower National Apprentice Wage, to highlight the LTC’s commitment to make the industry more accessible and appealing to young people seeking work.

Pam Rathbone, Head of Workforce Development Programmes at The Skills People, commented: “The apprenticeships that these young people are doing give them fantastic opportunities to gain skills and experience that employers really value. It is tremendous to see the enthusiasm and commitment both of the apprentices themselves and their supervisors and managers in the all theatres involved in the project.”

Announcing a £500,000 apprenticeship package in June 2013, Jessica Hepburn, Executive Director of the Lyric Hammersmith and Vice-Chair of the LTC said:

“This is the first time that 13 London theatres have worked collaboratively to offer a new route into our industry for talented young people from diverse communities. The programme will enable young people with passion and potential who are unable, for whatever reason, to go to university to gain the skills, experience and contacts that are needed to open the doors to a career in theatre. Sadly our sector is still shockingly under-representative of the diverse city in which we work. This programme could really start to change that in a meaningful way. It’s incredibly exciting.”