Business in the North 70 % more likely to take up apprenticeships than companies based in London and south-east

The European Union debated the significance of local solutions to the recession in 2011 and the figures on the take-up of apprenticeships in the UK suggests they were right to do so.

If we take willingness to accept an apprenticeship as a dedication to manuafacturing/producing or experienced/skilled manual work, the dislocation of London from the rest of the nation and specifically the north is striking, if possibly unsurprising.

Recently, Cheshire has experienced a good rise in the amount of apprenticeships, particularly in Warrington, which prompted The Warrington South MP David Mowat to say

“We will only succeed as a country when everyone is given the chance to reach their full potential.

These record levels of apprenticeships are fantastic news for our country, for Warrington, Cheshire, and most of all for the people whose lives are being transformed by the opportunities they offer.”

The top 20 regional authority areas are all in the regions, with Wokingham in the Thames ‘Silicon Valley’ the nearby to London, followed by Cambridge, another hi-tech center. All ten of the authorities with the most affordable take-up are higher London boroughs. Taking on an apprentice is thriving in the Northern counties.

The lowest of the ten, Kensington and Chelsea, saw 0.78 % of young people take an apprenticeship, a figure increasing just to 1.74 % in the greatest, Redbridge. Wandsworth, which comes 4th cheapest, is also in the most affordable 20 UK council locations school and education participation for 16-24 year olds, so something is plainly wrong.

The northern weighting can be found in the finding that apprenticeship take-ups in the UK are 70 percent most likely in the 3 northern regions, than in London and the south-east, in spite of superficial descriptions of the north as a location where production has actually had its day. A third set of data reveals the level of increase in take-up in the last six years. Authorities such as Sheffield, Leeds and Kirklees carry out strongly (together with Cornwall, Plymouth and Wiltshire) however London is absent from the top ten. The closest rep is, again, Wokingham.

The report is published by the Association of Accounting Technicians, the UK’s major professional body for accounts personnel. It acknowledges the impact on apprenticeship varieties, or work based learning options, of a location’s commercial composition – not huge in Kensington and Chelsea – unemployment levels and differing rates of economic activity, however it concludes that none of these variations are enough to explain the big divide between North and South.

Alex Dale, Director of National Academy of Excellence, ( which specialise in matching businesses with apprenticeships, states:

“I think a lot of people in the North won’t be surprised by these findings. The companies we work with all see the value and benefit a young person on an apprenticeship can bring. They offer long-term commitment, lower starting salaries, and are very eager to learn and prove themselves.

I wouldn’t worry too much about these findings right now, as I’m sure the companies based in the South will realise what companies in Cheshire, Staffordshire and the rest of the North of England realised long ago.”

It seems that business in the North is realising the most effective ways to remain competitive, which is encouraging for everyone. Utilising our young people in the area will be key both now, and in the future.

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