Meet Screwfix Trade Apprentice Finalists
THE past year has seen a 10% rise in the number of people taking on apprenticeships in England in a bid to get hands-on experience in the world of work.
And trade firm Screwfix have teamed up with the Daily Star to launch its fourth Trade Apprentice competition to find the best tradespeople in the UK.
Just 10 finalists have been selected, and after today’s final in London one winner will walk away with the title of Screwfix Trade Apprentice 2019, as well as a career-boosting £10,000 trade bundle, including £5,000 worth of Screwfix products and a brand new Macbook Air.
They will also win the opportunity to experience Global’s Field Day festival in Enfield as part of the build production team.
Caroline Welsh, Director of Brand & Marketing at Screwfix, says: “Apprenticeships are vital to the trade and invaluable to the UK economy.
“Each year the standard of entries excels and we cannot wait to spend some time with the finalists to find 2019’s Screwfix Trade Apprentice.”
Meet the 10 Finalists
Adam Schneider, 34, from Peterborough, is an apprentice bricklayer working for Randall and Co Ltd Builders. He is also studying for his Level 2 Diploma and NVQ in brickwork at Peterborough Regional College.
After working across several industries, he decided to pursue a career in bricklaying. His tutor John Higgins was so impressed by Adam, he entered him into the Guild of Bricklayers Junior competition, where he was crowned National Junior Champion.
Adam says: “I am massively proud of being named a finalist. If I were to win it would give me a huge boost and, one day, I want to be the person who gives others an opportunity to unlock their potential.”
Thomas Rowe, 18, from Paignton, is an apprentice joiner working for a local company and studying for his level 2 in Apprenticeship Joinery at South Devon College.
He is interested in Sashimono, a traditional Japanese method of crafting wooden furniture where pieces are put together without the use of nails or any other holding materials, and hopes to take up studying this in Japan in the future. Thomas says: “To be named Screwfix’s number one Trade Apprentice, and win the prize money, would allow me to build a workshop in my garden to further develop bespoke joinery skills.”
Leanne Dainty, 28, from Nottingham, is an apprentice plumber studying towards her level 3 plumbing and heating qualification at Nottingham College and also works for Nottingham City Homes.
Leanne was recommended for the Trade Apprentice competition by an advisor at her work, and they say Leanne always goes the extra mile for her team and customers. Leanne says: “I’d love be crowned the best apprentice in the UK. It would be such a great opportunity. Not only would it give me some of the best tools in the market, it would pay for invaluable experience on numerous training courses.”
Callum Abberley, 18, from Burton-on-Trent, is studying towards his NVQ level 2 Diploma in plumbing and heating at Burton and South Derbyshire College.
His ambition is to eventually run his own business that helps dementia sufferers, and he is a dementia friend – somebody who has learned about the condition to help their community.
Callum says: “I would love to learn more about appliances that can help save or improve lives, be it tech that can turn off the gas if someone has forgotten, or even something as simple as helping somebody to understand turning on the heating.”
Cain Scullion, 18, from Eastbourne, is multi-tradesman working for a local solutions company while also studying Building Maintenance at Hastings College.
He specialises in plumbing and carpentry and was put forward for the Screwfix Trade Apprentice competition by his boss, who has described Cain as one of the most hard working men he has come across. Cain says: “While I’m new to the role, I’m devoted to learning as much as possible and setting myself up to go as far as I possibly can in life.”
Megan Talbot, 19, from Rawtenstall, is currently working towards her level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Painting and Decorating at Accrington & Rossendale College.
Megan’s college tutor was impressed with her, putting her forward for the Screwfix competition due to her work ethic and the fact she is a great role model to her peers.
Megan says: “Winning the competition would be a dream come true.”
Matt Edwards, 20, from Broadstairs, Kent is an apprentice electrician working for a local company and studying his NVQ level 3 in electrical installation at Dover College.
He has overcome every obstacle in front of him to progress the career he is passionate about, including regular treatment for leukaemia.
Matt said: “I am delighted to have made the Trade Apprentice final. I am looking forward to the experience of the competition and, if I were to win, the tools and training would prove invaluable in reaching my goals.”
Wind turbine apprentice at Ørsted, David Davidson, 22, from Grimsby, works alongside studying for his Level 3 Electrical NVQ at the Grimsby Institute.
David has a passion for encouraging youngsters to consider engineering as a career, and visits local schools to talk to pupils about his life as an apprentice, and says if he wins he would like to fund courses that would allow him to mentor young people.
He has also presented to MPs at the Houses of Parliament, discussing offshore wind industrial strategy. David says: “I’m a big believer in learning on the job, so an apprenticeship is the best route for anyone looking to get hands on experience.”
Princewill Jackson, 20, from Glasgow, is a mechanical engineering apprentice for BAE Systems and is studying NC Mechanical Engineering at Clydebank College.
He is two years into his apprenticeship and was nominated for the BAE Systems apprentice of the quarter for Q1 2019, and is always pushing himself to learn new skills. Princewill said: “Winning the competition would be huge for me. The prize would help me grow so much, allowing me to progress up the career ladder.”
Stephenie Barron, 18, from Auchenblae, is a Carpentry and Joinery Apprentice for Stewart Milne Homes and is studying her trade at Dundee and Angus College.
Passionate Stephenie was named the ‘Best Introduction to Joinery Student’ in her class in 2018 and regularly puts her skills to good use volunteering to help local schools and charities with their carpentry needs.
Stephenie said: “To be nominated by my boss for Trade Apprentice is a great feeling, I always just try to do my very best while giving back and using my trade as a tool for that.”