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Defence giant BAE Systems is to recruit almost 400 engineering and business apprentices this year, the highest intake since 2008.
Around one in 10 of the new recruits will join the firm's five-year higher apprentice programme, which combines on-the-job training with degree-level studies.
Around 140 young people will join the submarine-building business in Barrow-in-Furness in Cumbria, a further 100 at the firm's ship-building sites in Portsmouth and Glasgow and the rest spread across other BAE sites.
Group managing director Nigel Whitehead said: ''Our continued commitment to the apprentice programme reflects the sustainable position of our UK business and the success of the programme in generating BAE Systems' workforce of the future.
''We like to train people from an early age and find that the combination of on-the-job training and academic study without debt, is a great motivator for our apprentices to stay with us.''