Funds for training body will go towards new apprenticeships and bursaries over a three-year period

The government has announced a major new funding deal with Constructionskills worth £133m over a three year period.

The result of an agreement with the Department of Innovation, Universities and Skills and the Learning and Skills Council, the funds, known as a "compact", will directly help the training body deliver 6,500 apprenticeship starts and 2,000 specialist starts, and help 50,000 plant operatives achieve NVQ level 2 before 2011.


The extra funding will also go towards supporting a proposal for a Construction Bursary Scheme, giving underprivileged and diverse apprenticeship candidates £1,200 to work on site for 12 weeks before they get a job.

Constructionskills also hopes that the funding will help it triple its number of Skills Pledges. So far, over 1,000 firms have signed up to publically demonstrate their dedication to training.

The deal is one of several compacts the government has made with Sector Skills Councils in order to boost investment in skills as part of its Train to Gain programme.

Skills Secretary John Denham said: “The government values the immense contribution the construction industry makes to our national life, and is committed to working closely with the sector to help it attract, train and retain quality staff.

"This compact will ensure that employers will have access to flexible, world-class training tailored to the specific needs of their business, delivered when and where they need it.”

Mark Farrar, the incoming chief executive of ConstructionSkills, said: “This is a great opportunity for us to build on the success we have had in working with the construction industry to meet its skills needs.

"Through the compact we now have a better opportunity to access funding from the Train to Gain budget to address existing and future skills needs.”