More apprenticeship vacancies are being created in the construction sector as applications increase by 34%, according to figures released today by the National Apprenticeship Service.

The latest quarterly Apprenticeship Index has revealed a 63% increase in apprenticeship vacancies in the construction, planning and the built environment sector which were posted online on the Apprenticeship Vacancies website between August and October 2013, compared to the same period the previous year. Some 1,370 vacancies were advertised over the three months, versus 840 in 2012.

With online applications overall in the sector leaping by 34% (to 20,160) and every vacancy now attracting an average of 15 applications, the government is urging employers to create more apprenticeship positions in order to meet the demand. The Index also reveals that an increasing number of female candidates are applying for apprenticeships, with online applications from women across all industries increasing by more than half since 2012.

Matthew Hancock MP, Skills & Enterprise Minister, said: "These figures show that apprenticeships are growing in appeal to young people, and yet more young women are seeking out this opportunity to earn while they learn and gain a recognised qualification while notching up vital work experience. I would urge more employers to consider how they can take advantage of this available pool of talent and grow their business through apprenticeships."