As the UK celebrates #NationalCodingWeek (13th-20th September), new research from @ZenInternet reveals that the UK has seen a surge in coding enthusiasts since the first lockdown in March 2020. With people spending more time at home, many have turned to new activities and as a result four million (6%) UK adults have taken up coding with the same number (6%) of adults wishing they had tried it.

  • 6% of UK adults have taken up coding since March 2020
  • Millennials emerge as most coding-enthused generation with 13% taking it up during lockdown
  • A further 6% wish they had explored coding as a hobby

Designed to encourage more digital literacy, National Coding Week takes place nationwide to help the UK learn new digital skills or share the skills they have in an effort to close the well-renowned digital skills gap. A survey from WorldSkills UK found that 60% of businesses believe their reliance on advanced digital skills is set to increase over the next five years, however 37% say their current workforce lack the advanced digital skills they need.

Millennials catch the coding bug

It appears coding is a young person’s game, but maybe not that young. When comparing what new things these generations have taken up since March 2020, millennials (25-34-year-olds) edged (13%) their younger Gen Z (16-24-year-olds) counterparts (12%) in the coding battle. However, there was a slightly bigger gap when it came to regrets with one in seven (15%) millennials wishing they had taken up the hobby versus one in nine (11%) from the Gen Z camp.

When broken down regionally, Manchester is the city filled with the most regrets, with one in eight (13%) revealing with the benefit of hindsight that they wish they had given coding a go. Whereas, Leicester could stake a claim as the coding capital of the UK, with one in seven (14%) taking up the hobby in the city.

“It’s exciting to see such enthusiasm to take up something that plays a key role in the digital-first world we now find ourselves in,” said Paul Stobart, CEO at Zen Internet. “Coding underpins so much of what we do in the online world from our computer systems to our digital infrastructure and everything in between. Those that used their lockdown time wisely to learn new skills such as coding will find their enhanced competency in this digital world will hold them in good stead.”

Plugging the skills gap

In order to help plug that gap, the team at Zen reaches out to the local community to set up self-sustaining code clubs through primary schools. The aim is to build students’ enthusiasm for software development and help out those that don’t have the resources, experience or confidence to offer coding themselves.

Stobart continued: “We’re really proud of our team’s efforts in setting up these coding clubs over the years. These are volunteers who want to give something back to the local community and they’ll be thrilled to see the enthusiasm for coding spreading up the age groups. While young people are the key to the future, the UK’s pressing skills gaps means we need these skills in the workforce now, so it’s encouraging to see there was a good uptake of coding during lockdown.”

You may also be interested in these articles:

The Ufi VocTech Challenge – what does it mean for FE? #VocTechFutures Episode 3

Sponsored Video

Register, Login or Login with your Social Media account:


Upcoming FE Events

Advertiser Skyscrapers

Latest Education News

Further Education News

The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

FE News publish exclusive peer to peer thought leadership articles from our feature writers, as well as user generated content across our network of over 3000 Newsrooms, offering multiple sources of the latest education news across the Education and Employability sectors.

FE News also broadcast live events, podcasts with leading experts and thought leaders, webinars, video interviews and Further Education news bulletins so you receive the latest developments in Skills News and across the Apprenticeship, Further Education and Employability sectors.

Every week FE News has over 200 articles and new pieces of content per week. We are a news channel providing the latest Further Education News, giving insight from multiple sources on the latest education policy developments, latest strategies, through to our thought leaders who provide blue sky thinking strategy, best practice and innovation to help look into the future developments for education and the future of work.

In Jan 2021, FE News had over 173,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector, putting us in the top 2,000 websites in the UK.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

Main Features

Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

FE Voices

FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

Sector News

In sector news we have a blend of content from Press Releases, education resources, reports, education research, white papers from a range of contributors. We have a lot of positive education news articles from colleges, awarding organisations and Apprenticeship Training Providers, press releases from DfE to Think Tanks giving the overview of a report, through to helpful resources to help you with delivering education strategies to your learners and students.


We have a range of education podcasts on FE News, from hour long full production FE podcasts such as SkillsWorldLive in conjunction with the Federation of Awarding Bodies, to weekly podcasts from experts and thought leaders, providing advice and guidance to leaders. FE News also record podcasts at conferences and events, giving you one on one podcasts with education and skills experts on the latest strategies and developments.

We have over 150 education podcasts on FE News, ranging from EdTech podcasts with experts discussing Education 4.0 and how technology is complimenting and transforming education, to podcasts with experts discussing education research, the future of work, how to develop skills systems for jobs of the future to interviews with the Apprenticeship and Skills Minister.

We record our own exclusive FE News podcasts, work in conjunction with sector partners such as FAB to create weekly podcasts and daily education podcasts, through to working with sector leaders creating exclusive education news podcasts.

Education Video Interviews

FE News have over 700 FE Video interviews and have been recording education video interviews with experts for over 12 years. These are usually vox pop video interviews with experts across education and work, discussing blue sky thinking ideas and views about the future of education and work.


FE News has a free events calendar to check out the latest conferences, webinars and events to keep up to date with the latest education news and strategies.

FE Newsrooms

The FE Newsroom is home to your content if you are a FE News contributor. It also help the audience develop relationship with either you as an individual or your organisation as they can click through and ‘box set’ consume all of your previous thought leadership articles, latest education news press releases, videos and education podcasts.

Do you want to contribute, share your ideas or vision or share a press release?

If you want to write a thought leadership article, share your ideas and vision for the future of education or the future of work, write a press release sharing the latest education news or contribute to a podcast, first of all you need to set up a FE Newsroom login (which is free): once the team have approved your newsroom (all content, newsrooms are all approved by a member of the FE News team- no robots are used in this process!), you can then start adding content (again all articles, videos and podcasts are all approved by the FE News editorial team before they go live on FE News). As all newsrooms and content are approved by the FE News team, there will be a slight delay on the team being able to review and approve content.

 RSS IconRSS Feed Selection Page