How do I apply for funding? 

As part of your application to join the Hackney Apprenticeship Network, you have the opportunity to apply to receive funding from Hackney Council to cover training costs for your apprentices or existing staff. The following guidance applies:

  • To receive funding, you must join the Network (pledging to create at least one new apprenticeship meeting our Apprenticeship Criteria)

  • Successful applicant businesses will need to create an account on the digital apprenticeship service to receive the transfer and pay for apprenticeship training.

  • Transfer payments will be made monthly to your apprenticeship account, and then paid directly to the chosen training provider.

Funding applications are welcomed from any businesses with a presence in Hackney, please note that your business must be either:

  1. A non-levy-paying employer (i.e. have an annual pay bill below £3m) OR

  2. A levy-paying employer who has already spent their levy allowance (i.e. has entered ‘co-investment’)

You can apply to access funding for:

Training a new apprentice recruit
If your organisation employs fewer than 50 staff and you recruit a 16-18 year old apprentice (or a 19-24 year old who has been in care or has special educational needs) the government will fully fund the cost of training. In all other cases, you can apply to Hackney Council for funding to cover the full cost of training.

  • This can be a new apprentice recently appointed, or a new apprenticeship you have not yet recruited for. Hackney Council can support you to create an apprenticeship, and identify suitable candidates.

  • Apprentices must be Hackney residents OR have attended a Hackney secondary school OR be a care leaver who has used Hackney’s Leaving Care services

  • Apprentices must be paid a minimum salary of £7.50 per hour

Training an existing member of your workforce

  • We will accept applications for funding to train existing employees, where businesses pledge to work with the Council to create at least one new apprenticeship meeting our Apprenticeship Criteria within 12 months of joining the Hackney Apprenticeship Network,

In your application you will be asked to specify how funding will benefit Hackney residents or people educated in Hackney. This could be, for example:

  • by creating or pledging to create an apprenticeship for a Hackney resident

  • by training an existing employee who lives in/was educated in the borough

  • because up-skilling your workforce will allow your business to better engage with residents.


In particular, we are keen to fund training which benefits the following groups of Hackney residents:

  • Care leavers

  • Those with special educational needs

  • Those with mental health issues

  • Those with other disabilities

  • Young black men

  • Those aged 16-24 or over 50

  • Women accessing Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) careers

You can apply to access funding for any approved apprenticeship qualification, from entry-level (Levels 2 and 3), to Higher (Level 4) and Degree Apprenticeships (Level 6). Please note that any qualifications must be listed as ‘approved for delivery’ on the Institute for Apprenticeships’ approved list of qualifications (standards), and any training provider funded through this programme must have a current Ofsted rating of at least 2 (Good). You can choose a provider, or Hackney Council can support you to find a provider.

This funding is subject to government rules. This means that:

  • Funds can can only be used to pay apprenticeship training and assessment costs for training delivered by an approved apprenticeship provider. Salary or other associated costs cannot be covered by this funding.

  • Learners must be directly employed by your business and paid through your PAYE scheme.

  • Funding can only be used for new qualification starts. Funds cannot be used for any qualifications which have already started.

  • Funds will be paid monthly for the duration of the agreed qualification.

  • Funds can only be paid when connected to an employed apprentice or existing member of staff, for an agreed qualification, and an agreed cost.

  • 10% of all the funds you receive as a transfer from another employer count as state aid.

  • If you are a levy-paying organisation and you are successful in accessing this funding, you will not be able to transfer any of your levy funds to another employer.


“The introduction of the levy made us reassess how apprenticeships can support us to approach workforce issues. We see apprenticeships as a great opportunity to provide training where there has previously been fewer opportunities, offer our staff a chance to improve their skillset and ultimately ensure we have the talent we need to protect and enhance the future of our services. We’re putting apprenticeships up as a first choice for departments. By putting them at the forefront of our recruitment plans, we hope we can encourage an organisation-wide recognition of apprenticeships and by working in partnership with local authorities such as London Borough of Hackney we are confident we can tap into the amazing talent pools of our local communities.”

Robert Brooks, Strategic Workforce Development Manager - Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust