Parts of the article by Andrew Bridgen, the Conservative MP for North West Leicestershire, on 31 July 2021. The full article is at https://www.express.co.uk/news/politics/1470465/HGV-driver-shortage-Tony-Blair-university-andrew-bridgen.
For many years I have been raising the issue of the shortage of lorry drivers, citing the lack of dedicated apprenticeship scheme as far back as 2015. In the intervening period, the shortage of drivers has doubled and only now have the Government acted and implemented a lorry driver apprenticeship.
When I raised this issue in 2015 the estimated shortage of HGV drivers was 50,000, now it is double that and whilst there are 600,000 HGV licence holders in the UK, only half of those are active in the industry and for many, it is the reasons that have been cited above why they have left the job, the drivers have voted with their feet.
If Covid has taught us anything it is how much we rely on key workers and how so many have felt undervalued over many years, this is one of the major contributing factors to the Brexit result that the metropolitan liberal elite didn’t grasp in 2016 and which they still don’t.