The diversity of apprentice employers was demonstrated in Bury St Edmunds during last week’s National Apprentice Week.
Greene King and Bury’s Smith’s Row Art Gallery both announced new apprenticeships during the week.
Greene King, based in Bury, committed to hiring 2,000 apprentices across its operations while Smith’s Row took on one.
In addition, Anglian Water pledged to take on 42 apprentices across the eastern region.
The National Apprenticeship Service said the two were among 280 companies across the country who pledged 20,432 new apprenticeships .
It added that 47 per cent of the companies were small to medium enterprises. The Government announced the launch of an online mentoring service to help SMEs, called Apprenticemakers.
Skills and Enterprise Minister Matthew Hancock, MP for West Suffolk, said: “We want to make going to university or into an apprenticeship the new norm.
“Apprenticeships are delivering for employers, young people, adults and the economy and are increasing at a record rate.
“Nearly every employer that takes on an apprentice reports benefits to their business, including the ability to grow their own talents.”
The Government also used the week to launch new degree level Higher Apprenticeships in space engineering and nursing.