Sheffield City Council have been given a £715,000 grant to tackle skills shortages in the construction industry. It was given by the Department for Education's Construction Skills Fund, and will be used to create a local training hub called the Building Block which is due to open on March 29. It is expected to help train 650 people and create 250 local jobs by March 31, 2020. Councillor Jayne Dunn, cabinet member for educations and skills, said: “The investment into the new hub provides a wonderful opportunity for local people in the city to learn new skills and begin a new career in the construction industry.
“Not only does the Building Block scheme provide people with very desirable skills, they are also gaining crucial work experience in order to provide them with the very best start into their new career.”
The Building Block will be situated in Manor Top next to the major Sheffield Housing Company developments at Manor Boot. The housing development is part of a 25 year plan to build 2,300 new affordable homes. Coun Jim Steinke, cabinet member for neighbourhoods and community safety, said: “We need skilled people to meet the demand and what better way to do this by offering training to Sheffield people.
“Sheffield Housing Company is a partnership to help us deliver some of the new homes that we need; all part of our plan to make sure everyone has a safe, warm and affordable home.” In order to be fully operational by the end of March, The Building Block project has been preparing since January 2019 and has already provided on-site placements to 35 local people aiming to start a career in construction. As skilled tradesmen will be in high demand, local people will have the opportunity to gain a two week construction training course covering disciplines such as bricklaying, decorating, electrical, joinery, plastering, plumbing and roofing. Sarah Beale, chief executive of CITB, said: “The Construction Skills Fund can be a genuine game-changer for both the construction industry and the individuals being trained. We have a massive need for home-grown talent and these projects will bring thousands of new people into our sector, giving them the crucial onsite experience they need to start a career in construction.”
Participants who successfully complete this training will get a two week work experience placement on-site, working alongside subcontractors on the various SHC new build sites in order to achieve accreditation to make them construction site ready.