New programme aims to create next generation of Mersey digital workers

Starting in September, St Helens Chamber’s new study programme will focus on IT systems and computer coding, creating talented candidates for local businesses. Tony McDonough reports

Clickworks in St Helens
St Helens Chamber’s digital training programme starts at Clickworks in September. Picture by dballphotography


A drive to address the Liverpool city region digital skills gaps is being launched by St Helens Chamber.

Starting in September, the new study programme will focus on IT systems and computer coding, creating talented candidates for local businesses and filling the gap in training for young people aspiring to have a career in the digital industry.

Liverpool city region is one of the UK’s fastest-growing digital and creative hubs, but many vacancies are left unfilled due to a shortage of experienced candidates. The study programme aims to address this by training local young apprentices to fill these vacancies.

Across the region, 22,000 people are already employed in the digital and creative sector. As an industry worth £1.8bn to the region, investment in the next generation of digital talent is key to building on our region’s strong position.

John Westhead, director of training services at St Helens Chamber, said: “Many young people have come to the chamber showing an interest in starting a career in development and coding, but there has been a lack of training available for them locally to do so.

“We’ve created this study programme to fill this training gap so they can pursue their career aspirations, right here in St Helens. It’s important to us to invest in developing the next generation of digital professionals, as the statistics show the digital sector is growing and local businesses are crying out for great candidates.”

The programme will be delivered at Clickworks, St Helens Chamber’s digital skills centre in St Helens town centre, and will train students aged 16-18 in the basics of coding; with modules including principles of ICT systems and data security, creating computer programmes, Java script and SQL.

Alongside building their coding and IT skills, students will complete an extended work experience placement and also will benefit from an all-expenses-paid study trip to Germany, a range of field trips, free driving lessons and more to broaden their industry knowledge.

John added: “This programme will create brand new candidates with the right training to be able to fill the vacancies of local businesses, boosting employment in our area. Plenty of local businesses are in need of candidates and are more than happy to offer apprenticeships after seeing how valuable they can be to a business.

To find out more about St Helens Chamber’s new study programmes contact Laura Brogden at or call 01744 742011.

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