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Acorn to launch construction forum

Acorn’s Construction Division has joined forces with Y Prentis to develop ‘In-site’, a forum for future construction skills. They are holding a launch event on 4th February, supported by the Celtic Manor Resort, which will bring together major industry stakeholders and contractors.


Marc Jones, operations manager of Acorn’s construction, mechanical and electrical division, said,The skills crisis within the construction industry is already causing some of the UK's major contractors to decline the opportunity to tender for certain sizeable projects. With nearly a dozen major construction projects on the horizon within South East Wales alone, the potential exists for all of these issues to be exaggerated, affecting the project costs and delivery dates, creating a ‘bidding war’ for skills. This is precisely what Acorn, Y Prentis and The Celtic Manor are committed to working together to avoid.”


Mandy Summers, Y Prentis’ programme manager, commented, “This is a topic that has been discussed within the construction industry for a while and now is the time to really take action. Without a concentrated effort, the skills gap will only get worse and cause knock-on issues for the economy as a whole.


“There is no shortage of people keen to work in the industry, but we need to make sure that they get the appropriate training and support they need – the launch of In-site is a step in the right direction.”


Speakers at the February event will include Mark Barry, Metro development director and advisor for the Welsh Government and Russell Phillips, vice president of facilities & development at the Celtic Manor Resort. There will also be talks from Summers and Jan Balsdon, head of community partnerships for The Wallich.


Phillips said, “Wales needs investment to help it thrive but without qualified construction workers, the investment will dry up, leaving the Welsh economy in a vulnerable position. As a world-class business that is continually investing, we know how important it is that there are no delays in the construction process. I believe that In-site is a step in the right direction to ensuring this widening skills gap is addressed.”

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