§ Mr. Sillars
asked the Secretary of State for Employment what is his estimate of the number of apprenticeships in the construction industry which will be made available in the current year; and how this compares with the past three years.
§ Mr. Golding
Reliable figures for the total intake of apprentices to the construction industry are not available. However, I am informed by the Manpower Services Commission that the planned intake of craft apprentices, for initial off-the-job training on the Construction Industry Training Board approved courses for the year commencing 1st August 1977, is 10,875. The CITB will encourage recruitment by the payment of substantial grants and will seek to meet any shortfall in recruitment by a Training Award Scheme, under which the Board itself will sponsor the initial training. Comparable intake figures for the three preceding years are 9,469 in 1976, 8,693 in 1975 and 6,872 in 1974. Training Award Schemes were also operated in these years.