One In Five Young People Are Now Jobless

One in five young people are now out of work, according to the latest unemployment figures.

Figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show a further 15,000 16 to 24-year-olds are now unemployed – a total of 949,000 people or 20.2%.

It comes as the figures show that in the three months from April to June, there was a surprise rise of 38,000 in the total number of unemployed, rising to a total of 2.49m, or 7.9% of the working population.

The number of people claiming benefits also rose, up 37,100 to 1.52m, far exceeding analysts’ predictions of a 20,000 rise.
It was the third consecutive monthly rise and the biggest jump since May 2009.


TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said:
“Today’s rise in unemployment points to a worrying deterioration in the UK labour market.
“And with our so-called ‘recovery’ stagnating, all the indicators point to further rises in joblessness.

“The number of vacancies is now down to levels last seen in 2009, while female unemployment is at a 23-year high. As public sector job losses mount, employment prospects for many women are looking bleak.

“It is also worrying to see the unwelcome return of rising youth unemployment, with more than one in five young people currently out of work.”

The labour market has been surprisingly robust throughout the financial crisis and employment has risen despite a sluggish economic recovery.

However, recent economic surveys have indicated that firms are scaling back hiring plans, raising doubts about the ability of private companies to make up for public sector jobs losses caused by the government’s spending cuts.

On Monday the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) said the UK could see unemployment rising again in the third quarter of the year, according to a survey of over 1,000 employers.

Figures by the body suggest that public sector cuts will outstrip jobs being created in the private sector.

— Post From My Amazing Wandering iPhone

12 Business Benefits of Apprenticeship Training


Why should my business take on Apprentices or get involved in Apprenticeship training?

Employers taking part in a recent research project about the cost of Apprenticeship training identified a wide range of benefits from Apprenticeship training. While such qualitative assessments of benefits are difficult to value they are nonetheless real and are the fundamental reason why employers were prepared to invest in Apprenticeship training.

The benefits these businesses identified included the following:

  1. Apprenticeships allow the business to secure a supply of people with the skills and qualities that the business required and which are often not available on the external job market;
  2. Apprenticeships help secure a supply of skilled young recruits – especially important for the replacement of an ageing workforce;
  3. Even if external recruitment was possible, Apprenticeships are less expensive to recruit and train than experienced workers hired on the external labour market because of high recruitment costs plus the costs of induction and any necessary training;
  4. Apprenticeships contribute to a pool of skilled and certificated employees for the sector from which a company might recruit in the future;
  5. They ensure that the supply-chain (i.e. sub-contractors) have a sufficiently skilled workforce;
  6. Apprentices tend to stay with the organisation and labour turnover is lower;
  7. Apprentices provide a cadre of employees from which to future managers could be selected;
  8. Apprenticeship training could increase interest in training amongst other employees;
  9. Apprenticeships demonstrate company’s commitment to the employee;
  10. Apprenticeships are more practical and job-related than other forms of learning;
  11. Apprentices can bring new ideas and innovation to the business;
  12. A good Apprenticeship scheme could be reflected in an enhanced reputation for the business both within the industry and in the local community.

Extract from: The Net Benefit to Employer Investment in Apprenticeship Training, A Report for the Apprenticeship Ambassadors Network by Chris Hasluck.

Big increase in apprenticeships due to ‘striking rise’ in trainees over 25

Research shows apprentices over 25 up from 36,000 to 121,000, but Labour says coalition is failing to focus on key skills

BAe apprentices

BAe Systems apprentices at work. The Department for Business says it has delivered ‘the highest number of apprenticeships this country has ever seen.’ Photograph: Guardian

A dramatic increase in apprenticeships – part of a government drive to tackle massive youth unemployment – has been fuelled by a surge in apprentices aged over 25, research shows.

The coalition exceeded its target of creating 203,200 apprenticeships for people over 19 in the 2010-11 financial year, creating 257,000 new apprentices, according to figures released in June. Research by the House of Commons library shows that the increase is due to a “striking rise” in apprentices over 25.

Labour accused the coalition of giving priority to increasing apprenticeships, rather than focusing on skills needed for economic growth.

The analysis reveals a 10% increase in teenage apprentices this year, compared with the academic year which started in September 2009. Teenage apprentices rose from 93,700 to 102,900. There was a 21% rise in apprentices aged 19-24, from 85,100 to 102,800. But the number of apprentices aged over 25 nearly quadrupled, from 36,300 to 121,100. Youth unemployment hit record levels earlier this year, and latest figures show around 917,000 people aged 16-24 are out of work. The research, commissioned by Labour, shows that the biggest increases in apprenticeships are in health and social care and retail.

One of the most dramatic increases was in the “cleaning and support service industry”, where 1,930 apprentices were created in the academic year 2010-11, compared with 360 in the previous academic year.

The statistics show a big rise in short-term apprenticeships, but only a small increase in longer-term apprenticeships which create opportunities to specialise and acquire academic qualifications.

Apprentices are paid employees who gain practical skills in the workplace as well as receiving training outside work.

Over the first three-quarters of 2010-11, apprenticeships lasting longer than a year rose by under 2% while those lasting less than a year increased by over 30% on 2009-10.Overall, the proportion of apprenticeships lasting longer than a year dropped from 47% to 41%.Gordon Marsden, shadow further education and skills minister, said: “For all the government’s warm words on apprenticeships, these statistics show they haven’t got to grips with the task of supporting business and creating an environment in which quality, long-term apprenticeships can flourish and support economic growth.”

The opposition claims the growth in older apprentices and the rising number of short apprenticeships conceals the axing of the last government’s Train to Gain initiative, which was aimed at improving the skills of existing employees.

Marsden added: “The decline of 6% in the proportion of people doing apprenticeships lasting longer than a year throws real doubt on the government’s ability to persuade key sectors such as construction and electrical engineering of the value of apprenticeships – sectors that are vital to our economic recovery and future growth.”

Nick Linford, managing director of Lsect, a company which provides advice to collleges and training organisations, said many apprentices over 25 were already in work and enrolled on apprenticeships that last as little as 12 weeks. He said there were doubts about the use of public funding and the quality of apprenticeships and “serious questions about whether the apprenticeship scheme has lost focus and if it’s making any impact on our appalling youth unemployment figures”.

But a spokesman from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said apprenticeships were growing across all age groups and were enabling businesses “to gain the skills they need to grow”.

“As well as delivering the highest number of apprenticeships this country has ever seen, the government has raised standards and enabled more apprentices to progress to higher levels. We have also set minimum guided learning hours to ensure that every apprenticeship delivers quality training. We are committed to further reducing bureaucracy to enable more firms from an even greater range of sectors to offer more apprenticeships.”

The latest statistics, from the National Apprenticeship Service, show almost 90,000 employers offer apprenticeships to 491,300 workers in England. Companies hiring the most include BT, Capita Group, Tesco and McDonald’s.

Apprenticeships – Increased uptake is positive but more needed to meet youth employment challenge, says REC

The REC has today welcomed positive data on the overall uptake of apprenticeships whilst underlining the need to ensure that they provide a genuine route into employments as well as a means of up-skilling existing staff.

The latest figures show that over 250,000 apprenticeships have been created in the 2010/2011 financial year, which exceeds the Coalition Government’s targets. However, this includes a big increase in short-term Apprenticeships – often taken up by those already in employment. Furthermore, a greater number of these positions have gone to the over 25’s, raising concerns about whether the Government is responding effectively to the UK’s youth unemployment crisis.

Commenting on this, Tom Hadley, Director of Policy and Professional Development at the REC said;

“The latest data shows some encouraging trends in terms of the overall take-up and progress has also been made in terms of positioning apprenticeships as a credible alternative to university. However, we need to accelerate the use of apprenticeships as a genuine route into the work of work for young job-seekers.

This was one of the key recommendations of the REC’s Youth Employment Taskforce and the latest statistics do not mask the need for sustained Government action in this area. The recruitment industry can play its part by developing apprenticeships within the sector, and by raising awareness amongst clients and candidates.

“With thousands of A-level students leaving school this week, it is increasingly clear that young people require targeted, focused assistance. This includes practical guidance on the benefits of apprenticeships and on the sectors where job opportunities are most likely to exist both now and in the future. As well as continuing to actively promote the apprenticeship route, the Government must commit to establishing a careers guidance network that is fit for purpose.”

JCB chairman tops list of wealthiest ex-apprentices

Thanks to Caroline Betts for passing this article onto us.  Caroline is a Senior Skills Manager at Essex County Council

City & Guilds hopes ‘skillionaires’ will inspire others to succeed without a degree

A vocational rich list has named the chairman of JCB as the country’s wealthiest ex-apprentice, with a fortune of £2.15 billion.

Sir Anthony Bamford, whose career began with a two-year apprenticeship at Massey Ferguson before he took over the construction equipment company, topped the list of “skillionaires” – Britain’s wealthiest people who have taken apprenticeships or other vocational qualifications.

The rich list was compiled by Philip Beresford, the creator of the annual Sunday Times Rich List, for City & Guilds and WorldSkills 2011, the international skills competition being held in London for the first time in October.

While Sir Anthony’s father founded the company which he now chairs, second place on the list goes to a self-made man: Laurence Graff, the “king of diamonds”.

After leaving school in the East End of London at 14 and becoming an apprentice to a Hatton Garden jeweller, Mr Graff has built a fortune valued at £2 billion.

Last November he broke the record for the world’s most expensive piece of jewellery with the purchase of a £28.8 million pink diamond.

His diamond business is worth £1.7 billion, with the rest of his wealth consisting of homes in Gstaad, London, Cap Ferrat and New York City, a 150-foot yacht, a Stellenbosch vineyard and a £125 million art collection.

Others named in the list include City & Guilds-qualified celebrity chef Jamie Oliver in 33rd place with £106 million, Dragons’ Den star and businesswoman Deborah Meaden with £40 million in joint 63rd place with fashion designer Karen Millen, and Stella McCartney (£15 million).

At 36 years old, Mr Oliver is the youngest of the top 100 vocational millionaires. A fortune of £10 million is required to make it on to the list, with fellow chef Gary Rhodes, another former City & Guilds student, bringing up the rear.

Former engineering apprentices make up 24 of the top 100, while the most represented industries were high tech companies, property and construction, and the leisure industry.

City & Guilds said they hoped the publication of the list would highlight the success of people who did not attend university and inspire young people to achieve.

Chris Jones, director general of City & Guilds, said: “Our latest vocational rich list proves you don’t need a degree to succeed. The list not only celebrates the success of Britain’s leading businessmen and women, but also serves as an inspiration to others to discover their talent and unlock their potential through vocational education and skills training. Many of the contestants at this year’s WorldSkills London event have done just that and I have no doubt that one day we will see some of their names on the list.”

Also on the list in 49th place was Britain’s wealthiest plumber, Charlie Mullins, who founded and runs Pimlico Plumbers and whose wealth is estimated at £55 million. He left school at 15 with no qualifications before taking up an apprenticeship.

“That was a mistake – I should have left at 14,” he said, describing his apprenticeship as the best thing he had ever done. Now his company employs 180 people and has a turnover of £15 million a year.

He said: “Not everyone wants to be a leader or to run a business. But knowing a trade means you can have a job on a stable basis for life, and run your own business if you like. We need tradesmen more than ever, not just pushing towards everybody going to university.”


The top 10 vocational achievers

1. Sir Anthony Bamford. £2.15 billion. Chairman of JCB. Former apprentice with Massey Ferguson.

2. Laurence Graff. £2 billion. Chairman of Graff Diamonds. Former apprentice with Hatton Garden jeweller.

3. John Caudwell. £1.5 billion. Founder of Phones4U. Former Michelin apprentice.

4. Sir James Dyson. £1.45 billion. Chairman of Dyson. Qualified in industrial design at the Royal College of Art.

5. Sir Terry Matthews. £1.4 billion. Founder of over 80 telecommunications companies. Former Post Office research department apprentice.

6. Jim McColl. £570 million. Chairman and chief executive of Clyde Blowers engineering company. Former apprentice engineer.

7. Trevor Hemmings. £550 million. Leisure tycoon who owned Blackpool Tower and Pontins. Former apprentice bricklayer.

8. Sir David McMurtry. £450 million. Chairman and chief executive of precision engineering company Renishaw. Former apprentice with Rolls- Royce.

9. Sir Arnold Clark. £430 million. Chairman and chief executive of Arnold Clark Motors. Former apprentice shoe designer.

10. Steve Morgan. £400 million. Chairman of Redrow builders. Studied an Ordinary National Diploma in civil engineering at Liverpool Polytechnic.



USA starts taking Vocational Training Seriously…

Connect Teenagers to the World of Work

What’s the single best idea to jumpstart job creation?

According to research from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, between now and 2018, the fastest-growing occupations will be “mid-skill” jobs–like dental hygienist, construction manager, police officer, paralegal, and electrician–that require an associate’s degree or occupational certificate, but not a four-year college education.

Unfortunately, if we wait until adulthood to offer workers vocational training, we risk leaving far too many of them behind. Unemployment among young people without a college degree is high, at 22.5 percent, and staggering among young people without a high school degree, at 42.7 percent. And with about half of inner-city high school students dropping out, a full 18 percent of 16 to 24-year olds are considered “disconnected youth”–neither enrolled in school nor working, stuck rudderless in a harshly unforgiving economy.

Such individuals, if they are lucky enough to find work, often become mired in low-wage, service sector jobs with few employee benefits and unstable hours. There are other options, but we need public schools to do their part in guiding students toward them. This means eschewing nice-sounding “college for all” rhetoric and instead embracing curricular reforms that introduce teenagers to all of the many opportunities available to them in the world of work.

In California, Linked Learning schools require students to enroll in college-prep academic classes, but also to complete several internships or apprenticeships in fields such as biotechnology, media, and engineering. Rhode Island’s MET schools connect low-income teenagers to local businesses and community groups for on-the-job learning. And outside Albany, every student at Tech Valley High School completes a professional externship of their choice during the month of January, in fields ranging from baking to video game design to train conducting.

This isn’t the nefarious “tracking” of yesteryear, but rather an effort to introduce young people to the ways in which their education can serve them on the job market. Students are less likely to drop-out and more likely to enjoy school when they see their classes as relevant to their future. High-quality vocational training opens doors for kids who haven’t been reached by a more traditional curriculum, and prepares more Americans for the real jobs the economy is producing.

Surge in the number of women apprentices

There’s a sharp increase in people signing up to learn a trade, and a lot of the new recruits are women

Louise Tickle The Guardian, Tuesday 7 June 2011

Apprentice painter and decorator Kerry Isom likes the work for its creativity and has recently won Johnstone’s Young Painter of the Year. Photograph: Frank Baron for the Guardian

Remember the joke, “how many women does it take to change a lightbulb?” Well, forget the old punchline. The new answer appears to be “just one, and she’ll charge you a £40 callout fee”.

Colleges are reporting a sudden upsurge in students signing up to learn how to be an electrician, decorator, mechanic or builder, and much of the increase seems to be down to female students. Far more women are now choosing to train in these trades, rejecting the more traditionally “female” roles of hairdresser, childminder, care worker or beautician.

“Welding and fabrication is absolutely booming,” says Andy Dawson, assistant director of manufacturing and technology at Preston College. All his welding courses are full and he’s recently had to put on two more – also running at capacity.

Overall applications for Preston College’s mechanical engineering and electrical engineering courses are up 50% on 2010. Bournemouth and Poole college has 17% more enrolled on painting and decorating courses this year compared with last, and Harlow College is this year processing more than double the number of applications for painting and decorating it received for entry in September 2010.

Ask students why they’re choosing to train for these jobs and the answer, Harlow principal Colin Hindmarsh, says, is that “these students are thinking about their future and doing something about it”.

“The labour market for the under-24s looks grim. We’re finding that our students are becoming more entrepreneurial, they want to be in charge of their own destiny and these sorts of vocational courses allow them to set up their own businesses. They can be self-employed and self-reliant.

“In the current climate, without getting a high-level qualification in a trade like welding, they don’t think they will get a job,” says Dawson.

The rapid rise in the cost of a degree may well be playing a part, says Michael Grange at Derby College. “With universities charging higher fees, we seem to be attracting the better students; certainly the ones who apply have better qualifications and are more focused.”

“We’ve had a significant increase in the number of women on this kind of course,” says Hindmarsh, “most noticeably in painting and decorating. At level 2, two thirds of our students are female.”

At Bournemouth and Poole College, head of construction Mark Loose says the number of women doing painting and decorating is up by 30%. At Preston college, Dawson says that whereas a few years ago six or seven girls might have done welding and fabrication and motor vehicle courses, this year it’s 40 to 50. Newcastle college has taken on its first female scaffolding apprentice, and hopes more will apply.

For Kerry Isom, 22, just finishing her second year as a painting and decorating apprentice at Bournemouth and Poole College, the motivation comes from the creativity she can bring to her work, and job satisfaction. Currently employed by her local council and doing one day at week at college, Isom’s work is, says her tutor, “exceptional”, and won her the Johnstone’s Young Painter of the Year award last October.

“I wasn’t sure about the job prospects at first,” she says. “But I like the fact you’re not behind a desk, and you can see what you’ve done. Painting’s quite relaxing!”

Isom wants to travel and knows she’s got a skill that will make her good money around the world.

Ruth Brough, 49, is currently studying to be a plumber and renewables installer with New Career Skills. Changing careers and looking to “make the most of the rest of my working life” she hopes she has discovered a market niche where she can work in the practical way she enjoys, and help people to live the greener lifestyle she believes in.

Plumbers and electricians are now having to get to grips with green technologies and more stringent health and safety regulations, says the chief executive of New Career Skills, Steven Wines — an evolution that may be attracting more women as the perception of traditional trades changes from blue collar to “green collar”.

Wines also notes that female plumbers or electricians have an interesting market advantage: hiring a woman for work in the home can be reassuring for older people, or women living alone, which, he says, “creates a niche for a female tradesperson”.

But are there jobs to be had in sectors that have always employed men and may be reluctant to take on a woman, no matter how well qualified? According to Tony Joyce, head of construction at Tresham College, “the opportunities need more advertising from the construction industry.”

The informal way in which recruitment often happens in vocational trades still prevents women getting jobs in significant numbers, says Linda Clarke, professor of European industrial relations at Westminster University. “If you go into colleges, there’s a far higher proportion of women training than you’ll find actually working in the labour market,” she says. “And I don’t see that’s changing very much.”

However at Newcastle College, Colin Stott, director of the National Construction Academy, says that in his experience, companies are more interested in the someone’s competencies than their gender. “Many [women] have had success as finalists in national competitions and the majority have found employment following completion of their course,” he says.

Dawson confirms this: “Particularly in motor vehicle, females are as good if not better. And their work ethic is often very good. They seem to be more rational about doing the tasks and, particularly in the 16-18 age range, a bit more mature. They’re more methodical and are very keen.”

Says Loose: “They have proved to be more competent decorators than the boys — often their drawing skills are better, their attention to detail, and they’re much calmer. Girls tend to get to a higher level. They who have done particularly well in the last three years.”

The pay for some trades is far cry from the relatively low earnings of childminders, care workers and beauty therapists. Welders involved in the construction of the BBC’s new Manchester home would, says Dawson, be “earning between £30,000 and £50,000”. And plasterers, says Grange, can pull in £650 a week.

Stott points out that these days he’s also able to recruit female tutors, which, in turn, transforms the career expectations of all students, male and female.

Posted By:
Paul Champion
North East Apprenticeship Company

Tel: 0191 4902453
Mobile: 07540 704920
Fax: 0191 5800218
Twitter: NEACltd

Apprenticeships surge may lead to funding rate fall

Apprenticeships surge may lead to funding rate fall
News | Published in FE Focus on 29 July, 2011 | By: Joseph Lee

Senior mandarin warns that Government will look to ‘financial controls’ to ease cost of boom in places

Apprenticeship funding rates may have to fall to pay for the rapid growth of places, the head of the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) has said.

Simon Waugh said that recruiting 50,000 places more than planned was not going to create financial problems for the programme or be “a runaway train” because the Government could introduce financial controls, including changes to rates.

He said: “We will always look at rates. In the current environment, I don’t think there is anyone out there who doesn’t realise that there is constant pressure on cost. We are constantly discussing with SFA (the Skills Funding Agency) and BIS (the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills) about value for money.”

The decision would rest with the SFA, which recently pulled back from a proposal to cut funding rates by 10 per cent in August, on top of a 4.3 per cent cut this academic year, after objections from providers.

But the Association of Employment and Learning Providers said that a cut would make it hard for apprenticeship providers to maintain recruitment and quality of provision. A spokesman said: “The imposition of significant cuts in funding rates would make the task of expanding apprenticeships for young people much more difficult.”

While he said the NAS did not want a “stop-start situation”, Mr Waugh said a sudden spike in apprenticeship starts one year could be offset by a reduction in the next.

But he said so far, the extra growth had been paid for in a faster reduction of Train to Gain provision, and by colleges meeting demand by reducing recruitment to other courses.

He denied that growth put quality at risk, but conceded: “Can I say to you that every single apprenticeship is of the quality that we would require it to be? The answer quite clearly is no. But wherever in our view that delivery model is not to the very highest standard, we will investigate it.”

Mr Waugh defended the quality of programmes that have seen large growth, such as customer service in the retail industry, where employers such as Morrison’s added as many as 12,000 apprentices in a year.

“I think there is this old-fashioned snobbery around apprenticeships having to be high-end manufacturing – the BAEs, the Bentleys, the Rolls- Royces,” he said.

And he defended the growth in the number of older apprentices. “It’s miniscule. It’s a percentage of a percentage of a percentage,” he said. “I think we’ve got about 2,000 over-60s, but when you’ve got people working later in life, made redundant, and you have to completely reskill – why would a 60-year-old not need to do that as much as a 16-year-old?”

He said the number of 16 to 18-year-old apprentices would rise by a percentage in the “mid-teens”.

Original headline: Apprenticeships surge may lead to fall in funding rates

Paul Champion
North East Apprenticeship Company

Mobile: 07540 704920

Boss of firm that will paint Olympic Stadium calls for apprenticeships

Olympic Stadium. Inset: Kevin McLoughlin

Published: July 29, 2011

ONE of Islington’s biggest employers warned the Prime Minister this week that Britain is fast becoming the “unskilled man of Europe” because young people are being “fobbed off” with temporary work instead of proper training.

Kevin McLoughlin, whose award-winning Essex Road company K&M McLoughlin Decorating Limited won a multi-million-pound contract to paint the Olympic Stadium, spoke out following a conference hosted by David Cameron.

He said: “Too many employers are offering work placements, which might provide a temporary fix but don’t teach a trade, instead of proper long-term apprenticeships. If this continues trained craftspeople will become a thing of the past. Already Britain is rapidly becoming the unskilled man of Europe.” Mr McLoughlin, who expressed his concerns in a letter to the PM, added: “The proof of their failure is reflected in the one million 30-year-olds and under who are currently unemployed.

“Unless companies can guarantee a genuine apprenticeship you will never reduce the level of youth unemployment. It doesn’t have to be this way. I believe apprenticeships can be really cost-effective and result in a highly trained and motivated workforce.”

Mr McLoughlin employs 140 people, of which 40 per cent came through his firm’s own apprenticeship scheme.

His letter to Mr Cameron received a reply from John Hayes MP, Minister for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning. He wrote: “Improving the quality of apprenticeships is a priority for this government.”

Born and brought up on the Priory Green estate in King’s Cross, Mr Mcloughlin, 53, left school with no qualifications.

He told the Tribune: “At least I was able to do an apprenticeship. Today there are very few schemes. Companies can’t afford to employ young trainees. Everything is sub contracted.”

Simon Boyle unveils new apprenticeship scheme

Emily Manson
Friday 29 July 2011 12:44
beyond food - experience the unique

Simon Boyle’s Beyond Food Foundation has launched a search for candidates to fill its new Kitchen Apprenticeship Scheme.

The venture, spearheaded by Boyle in conjunction with De Vere Venues and PWC, is looking to provide 28 candidates from disadvantaged backgrounds the chance to train at the Brigade, a new restaurant in PWC’s London offices in Tooley Street.

The recruitment process will begin with 500 candidates who will be whittled down to a final 28 through a six-week educational and practical induction scheme; “Fresh Life”.

The final 28 will then take part in the six-month apprenticeship scheme, which combines work in the Brigade restaurant and part-time training at Southwark College.

Boyle said: “It is absolutely vital that Brigade is a successful profit-making enterprise. It must be sustainable if we are to continue helping people get a chance to start a career within the hospitality and catering industry. We’re accountable for their training and development and this is a perfect example of how the third, private and public sectors can work together to make a real difference to people’s lives.”

The Brigade is part of PWC’s office block “The Fire Station”. Split over two floors, each with its own kitchen, the site includes an 87-cover bistro and a 65-cover bar on the ground floor. Run by De Vere Venues, the first floor features five private-dining rooms and a 45-cover cook school and private dining room.

The scheme begins in September. To apply for a place contact the Beyond Food Foundation Charity, Job Centre Plus or other linked groups including St Mungo’s, South London YMCASt Giles TrustSalvation ArmyConnections at St Martin’s,Thames Reach and the Foyer Federation.