Since launching in 2015, the Digital Garage has visited over 500 UK locations and trained over 300,000 people

Ronan Harris, MD Google UK and Ireland, today officially announced the launch of the first London-based Digital Garage initiative. In London today 11 per cent of the working population don’t understand basic digital skills. This partnership aims to give everyone the tools and support they need to take advantage of new opportunities and grow their business or career.The Google Digital Garage bus is a mobile training hub with expert trainers and mentors on board. The hub is set to visit ten London locations before Christmas to deliver free digital skills training to local communities and businesses. The free training sessions aim to help grow the confidence, careers and the success of individuals and small business across the UK.

Baroness Fairhead CBE, Minister of State at the Department for International Trade (DIT) was also in attendance to discuss an exciting partnership between Google and the DIT. In 2019, a new training programme will be added to the Digital Garage offering which aims to train and support SMBs in the fundamentals and importance of export.

Londoner and Business owner Seyi Ayinla, built her Nigerian wedding planning website Love WeddingsNG following digital skills training at Google Digital Garage in Leeds. Seyi said: “The Google Digital Garage did not just help me, it also helped a lot of businesses that I work with. The support also changed the way I see my website – it’s gone from being a hobby to a fully-fledged business. The Google team supported me with changes that were so simple, but made a great impact.”

While London is currently ranked as the second most-connected tech ecosystem in the world, the long-term upskilling of workers is an ongoing focus area. Presently, London employers are facing a wider skills gaps problem, according to local government association London Councils. Despite the rising population, the number of cases where employers have been unable to fill a vacancy due to skills shortages has more than doubled since 2011 – rising from 14,000 to 37,000.

Digital Garage London mobile hub tour details:

  • 27th November: Coin Street Neighbourhood Centre
  • 29th November: Croydon High Street
  • 30th November: Orpington High Street
  • 1st December: Deptford Lounge
  • 6th December: Kingston Jobcentre
  • 7th December: Ealing Town Hall
  • 8th December: Lewisham
  • 13th December: Ken Aston Square, Ilford
  • 14th December: Hackney Jobcentre
  • 15th December: Pembury Circus, Hackney