Plumpton College is set to launch a new retraining programme, which it says has been created “in response to the economic impact felt because of Covid-19 and with Brexit on the horizon”.

“Entry into Viticulture” is designed to help employers with their immediate workforce requirements by providing them with potential employees with the necessary sector specific operational skills they demand.

The retraining programme is a one-week intensive course designed to provide job seekers and career changers with relevant qualifications and introductory knowledge, sector engagement and a guaranteed interview from a recruiting industry employer.

Principal of Plumpton College, Jeremy Kerswell, said: “Recent studies found that Brighton alone is expecting 30,000+ redundancies in the catering and hospitality sector and Crawley has the second highest rate of furlough in the country. With this in mind Plumpton’s response to the current challenges in the jobs market is to launch our retraining programme, “Entry Into Viticulture”.

He said: “As a leading land-based college, Plumpton has developed programmes specifically to meet the needs of the sector and local employment opportunities. We have worked closely with Local Economic Partnerships, Land-based sector bodies and the Department of Work and Pension to ensure the programmes meet the identified local economic and skills priorities. If you are a business with immediate staffing requirements this is a programme for producers to get involved with.”

The Programme will be delivered by specialist staff across Viticulture with the pilot programme due to take place early September.