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Employment, skills and training support

We work with local partners to ensure that employers and employees, as well as those seeking employment, have access to skills training and support. 

On this page you will find information for employers, employees and those seeking employment, including young people. 

On this page:

Employment support initiatives

For Young People 16-24:

In 2021, New Forest District Council and partner local authorities Eastleigh Borough Council, Test Valley District Council and Winchester City Council combined with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to launch the Central and West Hampshire Youth Employment Hub.

The Central and West Hampshire Youth Employment Hub has now closed but you can still find information and support for young people aged 18 to 24 through the following sources:

  • your local Jobcentre Plus : a work coach can give you information about programmes to help you prepare for, find and stay in work. You can also get help with moving from benefits to work.  

Hampshire Futures

Hampshire County Council provides support to Hampshire residents aged 16 to 18 who are currently not engaged in employment, education, or training.

Their support can include:

  • one-to-one support and mentoring from a progression coach
  • help to develop employability skills such as CV writing, interview preparations, application completion
  • support to understand the full range of opportunities that are available to them like college, employment, apprenticeships, traineeships, supported internships
  • liaising with relevant stakeholders to support the participant to identify and overcome potential barriers
  • meaningful work experience and support to access personal development opportunities

If you would like to access support or have any general questions, feel free to contact them on email, or phone, 01962 846193.


Apprentices can add great value to your existing workforce across a broad range of roles. 

There are currently around 1,000 apprenticeship programmes ranging from Level 2 (equivalent to five GCSEs) to Level 7 in subject areas including warehousing, ecology, and leadership and management. 

Apprenticeships offer a broad range of career opportunities and allow apprentices to earn while they learn. With degree-level apprenticeships now available, this can be an attractive alternative to the traditional university route. 

Apprenticeships are not just for the recruitment of new staff into your business. They can also be an excellent way of upskilling your existing workforce. 

The Solent Apprenticeship Hub was established to encourage more businesses to take on apprentices.

It provides free, impartial advice on apprentice suitability, which apprenticeship programmes would suit, assistance with the recruitment process as well as guidance on funding apprenticeship training and levy transfers. 

The Apprenticeship Hub can also help individuals find apprenticeship training and answer any questions regarding applications or finding apprenticeship opportunities across Hampshire and Surrey. 

Find out more on the Solent Apprenticeship Hub website

There is also information for parents or carers of apprentices on the  Government site set up specifically to answer your questions: Apprenticeships Parents Hub website

Travel help for employees and trainees: 

For Young People 16 - 25: Wheels to Work:

 New Forest District Council have awarded £6,800 grant funding to the Wheels to Work (W2W) moped loan scheme run by Community First. 

The Wheels to Work project supports local young people aged between 16 and 25 with a low-priced moped loan so they can more easily attend work, apprenticeships, training or job interviews.

There is a small weekly hire charge and the moped loan is for up to a year. The scheme includes training, vehicle insurance and tax, a helmet and lock, plus servicing. 

For details on the moped loan scheme and how to apply, see the Wheels to Work scheme on the Community First website.  

Training and skills

Local training providers

Brockenhurst College

Brockenhurst College provides training for employees, professional qualifications and leisure courses. They can also assist with apprenticeships.

Find out more on the Brockenhurst College website.

Totton College

Totton College provides a free training needs analysis service. This is to identify skill needs amongst your employees, or help find an apprentice through the apprenticeship scheme. It can also advise on Government funding for skills support.

Find out more on the Totton College website.

National training providers

The National Careers Service

The National Careers Service allows you to search for courses and training online. You can also get advice on qualifications and funding.

Find out more on the National Careers Service website.

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS)

The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) is an independent public body that receives funding from the Government.  It gives employees and employers free, impartial advice on workplace rights, rules and help to resolve disputes.  

ACAS also offers training events and tailored support to help you deal with workplace problems and keep up to date with best practice. Find out more on the ACAS website 

Funding for skills and training development

There may be funding available to support the development of skills within your workforce. Many grant schemes are only open to new applicants for a limited period or for specific types of business or training. For this reason, we cannot list them all here. 

On the GOV.UK website, you can search for funding using the Government Grant and Finance search tool. The search will return the details of funding via Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs). 

New Forest is served by the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership. It is a locally owned partnership between businesses and local authorities.  Solent LEP has its own business funding programmes and a searchable database for funding. Visit the Solent LEP website to use the Solent LEP Growth Hub

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