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LSC Builds Links with Big Brother Winner


The Learning and Skills Council (LSC) is supporting Big Brother's Craig Phillips in his new venture to help address Liverpool's construction skills gap.

More than 8,000 extra construction workers are needed in Liverpool to complete vital building work before 2008, when the city will host the European Capital of Culture, according to a report by CITB-Construction Skills, the industry's Sector Skills Council. LSC funding will pay for facilities at a training centre set up by Phillips and provide tools for up to 180 students.

Elaine Bowker, Executive Director of the LSC Greater Merseyside, said: "We will fund training to help people gain the right skills for employment and Craig will use his links with employers to place the new recruits, helping to fill skills gaps."

Phillips, 33, who originally rose to fame when he won the first series of Big Brother in 2000 and has since worked as a TV handyman on ITV, will spend five days a week at his construction college when it opens next month. Speaking about his role at the centre, he said: "I can't teach because I am not qualified but I will be supporting the staff with my practical skills."

On a national level, the LSC says that construction suffers from the second worst skills shortages of any industry, with almost 43 per cent of total job vacancies remaining unfilled because of a lack of skilled candidates.


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