Loughborough apprentice scheme’s £52,500 boost

Charnwood Borough Council’s cabinet has backed a new Apprenticeship Award Scheme, allocating £52,500 which they hope can be awarded to small and medium sized entrepreneurs in the borough to create 35 new apprenticeships.

A previous scheme set up by The National Apprenticeship Service, the Apprenticeship Grant for Employers was set up in February 2012. However just five young residents are known to have received employment through the grant.

Charnwood council leader Coun David Slater, said: “This is about trying to help the NEETS as they’re known; the not employed, educated or trained.The idea came to me when I was told that there’s 20,000 vacancies in Leicestershire and then was told there are 20,000 unemployed.I know we’re not going to fill all 20,000 of those vacancies with the scheme, but we can chip away at the edges. If we can provide 35 more residents with employment then we will have done a really good job.”

Links with local training providers are now being established by the council and businesses to offer a range of apprenticeships for young people.

The scheme is open to Charnwood residents and apprentices will be eligible for the National Minimum Wage of £2.68 per hour if aged 16 to 18 while 19-year-olds should receive £5.03 per hour.