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Bellway’s Construction Manager And Apprentices Say Why They’re Supporting National Construction Week 2004

National Construction Week, the annual campaign organised on behalf of the industry by CITB–ConstructionSkills, to encourage young people to consider careers in the construction industry, will take place from 6 – 13 October 2004.

CITB–ConstructionSkills estimates the number of people the construction industry needs to employ is likely to rise, and there will also be a need to train and replace those who leave the industry. In the next five years alone there will be a requirement to recruit and train some 430,000 new people.

Bellway operates an apprentice-training scheme, as the housebuilder believes further education doesn’t have to mean college or university and learning ‘on the job’ can be a better solution for many young people.

Paul Smits, Construction Manager of Bellway Northern Home Counties, said: “We are committed to encouraging young people to develop careers in the construction industry. I’m a great believer in the apprentice-training scheme as I started out as a carpentry apprentice straight from school at 16. Like today’s apprentices I attended day release to gain the industry qualifications. The next stage of my career was to become a trainee Site Manager.

“I joined Bellway in 1995 as a Site Manager, then after 2½ years progressed to Contracts Manager, then to Construction Manager. If you’re willing to put in the work there are great career opportunities in construction – and life is certainly never dull.”

Bellway’s apprentice scheme provides employees with the opportunity of gaining NVQ level 2 and 3 qualifications. By the time apprentices are 21, when former classmates are just entering the job market from college or university, they are already on an established career path.

Jonathan Morgan, a 21 year old apprentice carpenter, said: “I started my apprenticeship in June 2003 and am scheduled to complete it in July 2005. I’ve worked on 10 construction sites and I attend day release at Aylesbury College where I’m studying for an NVQ Level 2 in carpentry and joinery.

“I’m really enjoying my apprenticeship as it’s given me a good career path and I know exactly what I need to learn and achieve. I’d recommend an apprenticeship and a career in the construction industry to people who are thinking about their future. It was working with my dad at his building firm that made me decide to get a trade. I decided to train to become a carpenter, as it’s a skilled job that’s well paid with good career prospects, as a qualified carpenter I should never be out of work. I’ve worked in offices but much prefer being a carpenter.”

Julian Humphreys, Business Area Manager for Image and Recruitment, of CITB-ConstructionSkills says: “It’s essential companies operating in the construction industry take a responsible attitude to training. Bellway is setting excellent industry standards to ensure a well-trained workforce for the future.”

To find out more information about Bellway Northern Home Counties apprentice training scheme call telephone number: 01908 328800 or visit www.bellway.co.uk For information about National Construction Week visit: www.ncw.org.uk

Quotes From Bellway Northern Home Counties Apprentices

17-year-old carpentry apprentice Daniel Blizzard said: “I decided to become a carpenter while I was still at school. I started my apprenticeship in June this year. I know exactly what I want to achieve and it’s great being able to work alongside experienced carpenters.

Lee Horton, a 16 year old apprentice electrician, who began his apprenticeship in August 2004 said: ‘I decided to become an electrician as I knew I didn’t want to work in an office and I’d have a good career as an electrician.’

Chris Dascombe, a 16 year old apprentice electrician said: ‘An apprenticeship is great as I learn something new every day and although I only started my apprenticeship in August this year I’ve already worked on 6 Bellway sites.’

“Robert Johnston, a 17 year old apprentice carpenter, said: “I decided to become a carpenter as I didn’t want to be stuck in an office all day doing the same thing. My days are really varied and it’s great earning money while you learn. I’m doing block release at college and will have my NVQ Level 2 in Carpentry and Joinery in July 2005.”

Eighteen year old Gary McGee decided to become an apprentice because “I wanted to work of outdoors and get a trade that meant I would never be out of work. I’m almost at the end of my apprenticeship but I want to go on and study for my NVQ Level 3 in Bricklaying.”

ENDS

NOTES TO EDITORS
For further information, or photography, please contact:
Catherine Goodier or Jo Jacobius of Axiom Communications.
Telephone number: 020 8347 8206 - e-mail: info@axiom-uk.com
September 2004



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