Pret A Manger has recruited 25 homeless apprentices to mark its 25th birthday. The new recruits have been taken on its three-month scheme with a view to becoming permanent.

They get full pay and benefits, while Pret will also give them £100 for work clothes, pays for their travel to and from work and helps them set up bank accounts. On graduating, they could get a full-time job.

Nicki Fisher, head of sustainability, said: “This is about helping to break the cycle of homelessness. Through working, the apprentices are able to get themselves out of hostels and into their own accommodation.

“After three months, if a permanent role is available and the apprentice has done well, they will be offered full-time permanent employment. If not, they will at least leave Pret with work experience to put on their CV and references.”

Pret has been working with eight charities and community projects in and outside London to identify potential apprentices. So far, more than three-quarters of the apprentices recruited on to the scheme stay with the company permanently.