As the construction industry faces a skills shortage, Building’s issue published July 1974 shows the sector facing similar problems
England v France in the training game
The 11 July 2014 edition of Building included a feature on the training gap in the UK’s construction industry. Joey Gardiner reported that despite plenty of young applicants ready to begin construction training, there is still a short supply of the skills the industry needs. In July 1974, Building ran a piece on training colleges, taking a look at both the Ecole d’Apprentissage des Travaux Publics at Egletons, in France, and the Civil Engineering College, run by the Construction Industry Training Board at Bircham Newton in Norfolk.
The main concern in 1974 was whether English schools were doing enough to train and support those pursuing a career in construction. The competition with their French counterpart was rife. French construction schools had a notorious reputation for having “magnificently equipped training establishments”, which put England nicely on the bench. Elsbeth Ganguin did little to hide her adoration for the French civil engineering college at Egletons and raised the question as to whether the British construction industry would benefit if more attention were paid to training.
By Hollie Tye
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