Core Highways’ details ROTL Training and Recruitment Programme

Core Highways has announced it has taken the initiative in its search for training potential new recruits from a previously unlikely talent pool. By working with a local prison, the company is offering serving offenders a life changing training programme with the chance of future employment in the highways sector.

Faced with an employment skills shortage and presented with the opportunity to break the cycle of reoffending for prisoners, the company have been approved as a ROTL employer and completed Lantra training with three inmates at Kirklevington Grange prison in March 2024. Release on Temporary Licence means being able to leave prison for a short time and is called ROTL for short.

Local Core Highways Area Manager, Ian Stafford, had personally led an information session and interview sessions with a wider group of inmates before signing up the successful candidates to the scheme. With a Core Highways internal trainer delivering in-person Lantra TTMBC and T1/T2 training at the prison.

Mr Stafford said “I was pleased with how many candidates were interested in our offer having never had a TM provider within the prison before. The final three have been really engaged throughout and have made a brilliant start, settling in well with the wider team. I hope this pilot can be repeated elsewhere in Core Highways and the wider TM sector and I’m confident these candidates will have a long and rewarding career with Core Highways.”

Feedback from the prison has been equally positive, with the Prison Employment Lead at HMP Kirklevington, Nia Collins, adding “Core Highways has been a great addition to the businesses and employers we currently work with at Kirklevington, providing career opportunities that align with many prisoners’ aspirations upon release.

“By offering ROTL placements, we ensure that prisoners can transition smoothly into employment before rejoining the community. We eagerly anticipate the continued growth of our relationship with Core Highways and the opportunities they provide for our men here at HMP Kirklevington.”

Core Highways embarked on this industry leading programme for two main reasons:

  1. It provides a pipeline of talent in a challenging labour market that can enter employment and have genuine career progression.
  2. Many ex-offenders need someone to give them an opportunity for a fresh start.

Christina Scant, Group Head of HR at Core Highways, led the development of the programme.

She said: “This scheme gives ex-offenders an opportunity to rebuild their lives ready for release. There can be many reasons why someone might be in their situation and our national coverage means that on release they can continue employment with us in a new area if that’s their wish, or they can access housing and other support as they’re in full time employment and have built some funds to start their life.

“This is genuinely a life changing programme that many sectors have successfully utilised for several years. We’re proud to bring this to the highways space for the benefit of both our business and the communities we work within.

Whilst this is a pilot scheme, it has been successful to date, and we hope to expand the scheme to other areas of the UK and to women’s prisons too.”

Anything that can be done to curb reoffending rates in the UK is a positive step with Ministry of Justice (MoJ) rates suggesting an £18.1 billion cost to UK plc. Core Highways are committed to help drive this figure down by offering employment, where applicable, to people coming to the end of their sentence.

The MoJ suggest that reoffending rates for those who return to society without P45 employment are 43% whereas those who return to society and gain P45 employment see that figure fall to 18%.

Core Highways is a leading provider of temporary traffic management, barrier solutions and events signage with the ability and expertise to deliver across the UK, offering local knowledge on a national scale, from small schemes to major projects.

(Picture – Core Highways)


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