Test Valley Borough Council is now able to work with construction companies to help recruit, train and connect employees to local schools and colleges after being awarded a certification by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).
Earlier this year, the council applied to the Construction and Industry Training Board (CITB) to become an official National Skills Academy, which has now been approved.
It means that TVBC can now work with construction companies, schools and colleges around the area to offer training. It also enables the authority to require developers hoping to build in the borough to fulfil seven categories. They include a certain number of work placements, new jobs that will be created by the development and qualifications that will be gained by the workforce.
The application took several years to prepare with the Barratt Homes King’s Chase development in Romsey used as the case study.
The council is already working with developers across the borough on five different employment and skills plans covering both the commercial and residential sectors.
Economic development and tourism portfolio holder, councillor David Drew, said: “I am very pleased that the council’s application has now been approved. It means that we are one of only a few local authorities across the county with this accreditation, enabling us to work more closely with developers throughout the borough to get more out of the developments.
“Being able to team up with schools and colleges to support them by ensuring developers can recruit people with the right skills is a brilliant step forwards for everyone.”
Community liaison manager at Barratt Homes, Anthony Dimmick, said: “We’re so pleased that the way we’ve worked collaboratively with the council has played a part in the securing of this accreditation.
“We’ve always had a heavy focus on supporting the communities we work in, particularly working with local schools and supporting apprentices.
“Our partnership with Test Valley Borough Council has allowed us to formalise this and the results speak for themselves.”
Laurence Stone, CITB Manager for Hampshire, said: “National Skills Academy for Construction status makes a real difference to an area in helping to train local people into construction jobs, including through apprenticeships. We’re delighted to be working with Test Valley Borough Council to support residents into the exciting variety of construction careers, and businesses through investment in training, skills and local talent.”