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Skills Minister Nick Boles joined Sir Terry Morgan, Chairman of Crossrail, and Andy Mitchell, Chief Executive of the Thames Tideway Tunnel, to debate how our construction skills needs can be met.
The construction industry is one of the UK’s fastest growing and is a key driver of productivity and the country’s economic health – construction accounts for 7% of the UK’s value added and makes up 10% of total employment. With politicians from all sides committed to devolution, spreading prosperity across the United Kingdom and tackling the housing crisis, strong demand in the sector is only likely to continue.
The industry’s growth means it is now a victim of its own success. An increasingly severe skills shortage threatens to derail the industry’s recovery and stymy efforts to meet the UK’s housing and infrastructural needs. Nearly half of builders have had difficulty recruiting bricklayers in the last year, and there has been a substantial fall in apprenticeship completions. The Government is making positive strides through the Construction 2025 strategy toward meeting this skills gap, but much more needs to be done to ensure we have the skilled workforce to build the prosperous places and cities we need.
Held in partnership with Tideway, this event looked at how our STEM and construction skills needs can be met. It looked at how the Government’s housebuilding drive and major infrastructure projects such as the Tideway Tunnel, Crossrail and High Speed Rail can be delivered and can leave a lasting legacy of a skilled local workforce.
Nick Boles MP, Minister of State for Skills
Andy Mitchell, Chief Executive, Thames Tideway Tunnel
Sir Terry Morgan, Chairman, Crossrail
Bridget Rosewell, Commissioner, National Infrastructure Commission
Kate Allen, Political Correspondent, Financial Times (chair)
In partnership with:
Photos from the event:
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