HGV Apprenticeship Funding Set To Increase From July
Government funding for apprentices in the haulage industry is set to increase to £7,000 per apprentice from 1st July.
The move, which was confirmed by Gavin Williamson, the Secretary of State For Education, has been welcomed by haulage associations such as the RHA as a way to ensure there are enough drivers to handle haulage equipment in the future.
Driving a heavy goods vehicle requires not only a specific driving license but also a Driver Certificate of Professional Competence, a four-part assessment consisting of theory, case studies, driving ability and practical demonstration sections.
Applying for these tests as well as getting a CPC card to prove your driving ability can cost nearly £300 before the cost of training courses is even considered.
Initially, funding for Class C+E driver apprenticeships was set at £6,000 by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education.
However, after this amount was rejected by the Trailblazer Group for Transport and Logistics, ministers intervened in the process and ensured that the apprenticeship grant was larger.
The chief of the RHA, Richard Burnett, praised the move as “one element” to help tackle a driver shortage issue in the industry, and called for HGV drivers to be added to the Home Office’s shortage occupations list.
This list allows people to qualify for a skilled worker visa if they are working in one of these fields and would allow wider recruitment of drivers in the short term.
Around the same time as this, a report by Logistics UK praised the industry’s resilience despite the challenges of the past year and rising running costs caused by increased shipping container rates and vehicle repair and maintenance costs.