In a bid to inspire the next generation of Yorkshire construction professionals, leading built environment specialist Shepherd is offering the local community an exclusive look behind the scenes at one of the region’s most exciting development sites next month.
Shepherd, who is leading the project to deliver the landmark 6 Wellington Place commercial office development in Leeds city-centre, is participating in the Open Doors Weekend 2015 initiative.
The event has been organised to spark the imaginations of young people and raise awareness of the exciting construction career opportunities available.
On Friday and Saturday (6-7 March), Shepherd is inviting local school children and the wider community to don hard hats and take guided tours of the 104,000 sq ft development to see for themselves the fascinating work that goes on in one of the UK’s most dynamic, creative and important industries.
Located in the heart of Leeds city centre, 6 Wellington Place is the second project undertaken by Shepherd in partnership with MEPC, as part a masterplan to create more than 1.5 million sq ft of commercial, retail, leisure and residential space in the area.
A major boost to Leeds’ commercial property market, the site is the perfect example of the UK construction industry’s importance to both the national and Yorkshire economies.
New research by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has revealed that the UK construction industry will need an additional 223,450 jobs over the next five years to handle the country’s expected output growth by 2019 – an average 44,690 new recruits each year.
That’s why the timely Open Doors industry initiative is dedicated to showcasing the diverse range of careers that construction has to offer and the wide range of skills needed to make buildings and infrastructure part of our everyday lives.
The Open Doors Weekend is the result of a partnership of four leading industry bodies, UK Construction Group (UKCG), CITB-ConstructionSkills, The Considerate Constructors Scheme, Construction News and the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB).
Mark Perkins, CEO of Shepherd, said: “We are immensely proud of Shepherd’s long history and close affinity with generations of talented Yorkshire construction professionals and look forward to welcoming the community to explore Wellington Place on Open Doors Weekend.
“We are committed to fuelling the pipeline of young talent, to help ensure that our business remains future-proof and that regional investment translates into local recruitment. Our goal is create a long-term skills legacy to reflect this area’s proud engineering heritage.
“At Shepherd and across our industry, the UK can boast an array of the world’s most creative, dynamic and innovative teams whose ingenuity represents the international benchmark across the built environment sector.”
Shepherd is one of more than 20 employers taking part in the Open Doors Weekend on 75 plus sites across England, Scotland and Wales.
Stephen Ratcliffe, Director of UKCG, commented: “Construction is undergoing rapid change and needs to develop a skilled, diverse workforce to meet these challenges and maintain its position as one of this country’s most dynamic, creative and important industries.
“Nowadays construction is more about careers than jobs and the expected increase in demand for management roles in the next few years means that we need quality talent entering the industry now to fill these future positions.
“Open Doors Weekend is a unique opportunity for the industry to display the complexity, excitement and scope of modern construction projects and give people a taste of what it’s really like to work in the industry.
“But places will be limited so I’d encourage anyone interested to go on the site and register to secure their place to avoid disappointment.”
To register to attend the public Open Doors Weekend event on Saturday 7th March at Wellington Place, log on to opendoorsweekend.co.uk/site/223