Network Rail to spend £30m on apprentice scheme

Network Rail has started one of the UK’s biggest-ever apprenticeship schemes in its search for more than 1,000 17- to 19-year olds.

The advanced apprenticeship scheme will cost £30m over the next five years with Network Rail recruiting 200 apprentices a year. Those who complete the three-year course are guaranteed a job in Network Rail’s maintenance function, which has centres throughout the UK.

Iain Coucher, deputy chief executive officer of Network Rail, said the scheme demonstrated the company’s commitment to investing in the railway men and women of tomorrow.

“The scheme provides a fantastic opportunity for the successful applicants who will play a key role in helping to rebuild our railway,” he said.

The initial course of study will give the apprentices a solid background in engineering, leading them to attain NVQs at level 2 and 3 and a BTec National Award technical certificate.

Network Rail staff, delivering a range of rail-specific training, will teach the second and third years of the course. This will help to fulfil Network Rail’s strategy of standardising the set of competencies and standards for its employees.

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