LEP urges businesses to take advantage of increased financial support to recruit an apprentice

LEP urges businesses to take advantage of increased financial support to recruit an apprentice

The government has this week increased the amount of financial support that businesses can access to recruit an apprentice. These changes mean that the government will now fund 95% of the training costs of recruiting an apprentice for non-levy paying businesses.

The Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is urging businesses across Leeds City Region to take advantage of this opportunity and the further support that is available from the LEP.

From this week, businesses will need to make a financial contribution, or ‘co-investment’ of just 5% to cover the costs of recruiting a new apprentice.

It is hoped that these changes mean that small and medium sized businesses will be able to afford to take on an apprentice and will benefit from the added value apprentices bring. Recent research suggests that 83% of apprenticeship employers would recommend an apprentice to other businesses.

Alongside this increased financial support, businesses with 249 or fewer employees in Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, Wakefield or York can also apply for a grant of up to £2500 to recruit their first apprentice - aged 19-24 - from the LEP.

The LEP, working in partnership with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority is driving plans to increase the number of apprenticeships for people of all ages, available across Leeds City Region - offering people the opportunities to succeed and accelerating economic growth. 

Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leader of Bradford Council, said:

“I very much welcome these national changes to apprenticeship funding which will allow more businesses in Leeds City Region to benefit from an apprentice and realise the huge potential our young people have to offer.”

“Apprenticeships provide fantastic opportunities to start exciting careers, enter new industries and retrain. Developing a skills system that enables people to move into well paid, fulfilling careers is key to ensuring a strong and successful economy where everyone can prosper.”

“Businesses providing high quality apprenticeship opportunities is a win-win situation for the apprentice, the business and the wider economy.”

Roger Marsh OBE, Chair of the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP), said:

“We know that hiring an apprentice is a great way to tailor training based on your needs and futureproof your business.”

“This increased financial support from central government alongside the LEP apprenticeship grant means it has never been a better time to recruit an apprentice.”

“Businesses in West Yorkshire and York have a great opportunity and I urge you to pick up the phone and find out how the LEP and partners can support your business growth plans today.”

The LEP grant is on offer for businesses in Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, Wakefield and York with up to 249 employees to recruit their first apprentice, aged 19-24.

For businesses with fewer than 50 employees the government will pay the full cost of training for an apprentice, aged 16-18 years or for a 19-24 year old who has previously been in care or who has an education, health and care plan provided by their local authority.

To find out more about this grant or general support on apprenticeships through our Employment Hubs  call the LEP Business Growth Service on 0113 348 1818, email or visit

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