Selhurst drivers apprentices

Rail firms pledge to create thousands of new apprenticeships

Rail firms are marking National Apprenticeship Week by offering thousands of placements in jobs ranging from engineers to technicians.

The number of apprentices recruited by rail firms Southern, Thameslink and Great Northern last year exceeded its target of 200 by almost 20%, it was announced.

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) said the 31–40 age group accounted for almost three-fifths of the total number of apprentices from 2017 to 2021, adding that it has been successful in its commitment to attract a greater number of female and ethnic minority applicants.

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David Jackson, Apprenticeship Specialist at GTR, said: “Working in rail provides an opportunity for people of all ages to invigorate their careers in an industry which provides first class training and long-term job prospects.

“As passenger numbers increase and the country starts to get back on track, we’re delighted to be able to offer even more fantastic apprenticeship opportunities to work in the rail industry.”

This year the rail operator is aiming to increase the number of apprenticeships on offer, with programmes available across departments, including engineering, customer services, train driving and administration.

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HS2 said 80 apprenticeship vacancies will go live this week, with more to follow in the weeks and months ahead, as it seeks to expand the 20,000 strong workforce already in place delivering the first two phases of the rail project from London, through the Midlands and on to Crewe.

Bus and coach operator Stagecoach said it has reached the milestone of having its highest ever number of apprentices currently employed – more than 1,000.

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