The UK construction industry is seeing a surge of development, with a high demand for more housing being the key focus for many city and district councils. One such council, which has recently begun work on building and regenerating its area, is Bolsover District Council in Derbyshire who have employed apprentices (through Vision Apprentices) to help with their current project.
The B@Home partnership was launched last year between Bolsover District Council and Robert Woodhead Ltd through the Efficiency East Midlands (EEM) Ltd’s New Build Developer Framework to build more than 100 energy efficient homes in the local area in the next four years.
And Vision Apprentices is currently watching three of its apprentices develop by carrying out maintenance work for Bolsover District Council, and making the most of the opportunity to learn additional skills on the new build properties on the Fir Close development in Shirebrook; an area of derelict land, which will soon contain six two-bedroom houses and two one-bedroomed flats.
Josh Gozzard, electrical apprentice, Tyler Griffiths, joinery apprentice and Jake Rawson, plumbing apprentice are all employed by Bolsover District Council and are already seeing the personal and career benefits of working on a live building site.
Eighteen-year-old Jake, joined the council two years ago as a plumbing apprentice. He attends Vision West Nottinghamshire College’s construction campus one day a week as part of his training.
He said: “It’s great to be working on this kind of project. I’m learning lots of things I’ve never done before and it’s boosting my skills. On site you experience new levels of responsibility. I get my theory and some practical studies at college and then get to put it into real practice on site.
“As an apprentice you get great hands-on experience and a head start into a career. I would really like to apply for a full-time job here at the council after qualifying.”
Josh Gozzard, 18, said: “I’m really looking forward to doing all the first and second fixing for an entire house. It’s quite daunting to see a real-life site but also very exciting. I’m finding it interesting working with others on site. I’ll admit, I feel a lot slower than those who’ve worked in their trades for years, but I’ll get there! To still be able to study and be in paid work is amazing.”
And Tyler Griffiths, 17, agrees that his skills are improving. He said: “Life working on site is definitely different. I learn so much about it at college but that’s under test conditions – this is the real thing. Working alongside other people is great and is improving my communication skills.”
David Pearson is Woodhead’s project manager for the B@Home partnerhsip. He said: “Working with apprentices isn’t a new concept for Woodhead. Part of the reason we won the tender was based on the employment opportunities we can offer local apprentices, not just because we can deliver the building works.
“We’re proud to support our local communities and often work with local schools and colleges to provide work experience opportunities, and always aim to use local suppliers and contractors for materials and services.”
A complete version of this article can be found here. Apprenticeships offer a great route in to over 170 industries. For more information visit www.visionapprentices.co.uk and apply for vacancies online, or speak to an advisor on 0800 121 8317 today.