West Mids & North West LGV Skills Bootcamp Dulson Training
Driver training specialist Dulson Training has joined forces with the Government to ensure hundreds of HGV learners left high and dry when a national training provider went into administration can now resume their licence acquisition courses.
The learners had all signed up to the successful Lorry Driver Skills Bootcamp programme launched last year but when the North West based national provider went into administration in November, it left thousands of learners across the country and the training centres, including Dulson Training, who had been sub-contracted to carry out the courses in a very difficult situation.
Dulson Training has been working closely with the Department for Education (DfE) since November to try and resolve the issue and has now signed a new ‘Rescue Contract’ to carry out the training programme. This training is being delivered at the firm’s centres in Shrewsbury, Telford, Ludlow, Wrexham and Wolverhampton and covers the North West and West Midlands.
Steve Dulson, of Dulson Training said: “Securing the new contract is good for us as a company but is really good news for the many HGV learners who were left in a very awkward position. The skills bootcamp was designed to deliver training courses to employed and unemployed people helping people within the industry to upskill and those from outside to source a new job and career.
“It was very successful, a big part of what we were doing and it was going on all over the country. Unfortunately, in November one of the biggest national providers went into administration leaving hundreds of learners across the UK halfway through the process, stranded with no training and no chance of licence acquisition.
“It wasn’t a good situation for us either, or other training and test centres, who had been sub-contracted to deliver the training by this national provider. We had completed a lot of training which we have not been paid for and had hundreds of learners booked on courses when it all ground to a halt.
“We stayed in touch with our learners and from the end of November we were closely involved with the DfE to try and work out a rescue plan so training could be reinstated. The Rescue Contract was signed a couple of weeks ago, meaning any learner that was in the DfE system can now recommence their training. We welcomed the first of the learners back on February 6th.
“The new contract means we are working directly with the DfE and will be delivering the DfE training across the West Midlands, from our centres in and around Shropshire, and the North West from our centre in Wrexham. It’s great news for us, for the learners and for the HGV industry in general.
“We had to work our magic initially because we were expecting to be delivering training for hundreds of these learners in the first quarter of 2023 – a massive hole appeared in our bookings. We were able to keep things going, still had other public and trade contracted work, kept all staff and equipment on the road and are now back in full flow again.
“We are delighted with the new contract which involved proving to the DfE that we can provide the service, stability and commitment necessary to deliver courses to the highest standards – and, of course, our pass rates are very good which is something they took into account.
“There is a very strict criteria and we really had to showcase the high level of professionalism that our company consistently operates at. Our mission is to constantly evolve our services to be the best that they can be.
“The training industry has proved a difficult landscape over the last 24 months with a lot of changes, including removing the B+E trailer test, allowing direct to Class 1 C+E tests and bringing the reversing and coupling part of the test in-house – all since national lockdown eased.
“Add to this the general cost of living crisis and the staggering fuel and parts cost increases, meaning we have seen training providers big and small feel the strain of these changes. We have some exciting challenges ahead, all of which we will face with the will to provide the best training packages possible, we have already seen a fantastic pass rate to start 2023.”
For more information about the courses provided by Dulson Training, call: Telford 01952 770659, Shrewsbury 01743 709611, Wrexham 01978 805868, or visit the website at https://www.dulsontraining.co.uk/.