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Skills Minister meets Kickstart trainees and apprentices at CITB Perry Barr On-site training hub

Minister Burghart called in at CITB’s on-site training hub at the Lendlease site in Perry Barr last week. The training hub will give hundreds of local people the skills to build more than 1,400 homes and start a rewarding career in construction on one of Birmingham’s biggest construction sites.

Perry Barr, where half of the population are under 30 is undergoing a £700 million regeneration programme focusing on enhancing infrastructure, providing new homes and creating new community spaces. The investment is set to make the district an ever more vibrant multi-cultural area full of opportunity for its talented community and to welcome the forthcoming Commonwealth games’ visitors.

Lendlease is the principal contractor for the residential scheme. The scheme is in its final phase with the majority of the build complete. A range of contractors have been working on the development, including Kier, Vinci and Willmott Dixon, alongside a significant number of small and medium sized enterprises.

Minister Alex Burghart MP was joined by CITB’s Andrew Bridge and Jackie Ducker to gain an insight into how the training hub is getting people into jobs and apprenticeships in the industry.

A significant number of apprenticeship opportunities across a range of trades and occupations have been created by the project. Participants in Government initiatives such as Kickstart and Skills Bootcamps have also been beneficiaries of the project.

The party was given a tour of site and training facility with opportunity to meet with apprentices, Kickstart participants, and unemployed people to talk to them about how they have been benefitting from the project.

Skills Minister Alex Burghart said:

“It was my pleasure to visit CITB’s onsite training hub at Perry Bar and see first-hand how the scheme is supporting people from across the region to gain the skills they need to secure jobs locally, working on exciting building projects that will create thousands of homes in Birmingham.

“Levelling up opportunity remains a top priority and initiatives like this are exactly the kind of employer-led, local approach that will boost skills and jobs across the country.”

CITB has supported the set up of the onsite training hub, and the provision of training at the site. The CITB Engagement Team has worked closely with South and City College on the set up of an onsite CITB HS&E Test Centre, and supported RMF, a plant training provider and a CITB Approved Training Organisation to deliver specific training onsite.

CITB’s Executive Director for Customer and Product, Jackie Ducker, joined the visit.

She said: “It is great to see the positive results being achieved at Perry Barr.

“The impact of the onsite experience hubs, support for apprentices and cross industry collaboration is really paying off and helping to create better opportunities for more people to join the construction industry.

“CITB is very proud of the part we play to support large and small employers and prepare a skilled, ‘site ready’ workforce to deliver high quality construction projects across GB”

Being a partner in the Social Value Steering Committee has allowed CITB to develop a strong working relationship with key partners and stakeholders in the Combined Authority area, leading to further opportunities to work in true collaboration.