Apprenticeships ‘key to a brighter future’

Gordon Marsden with Jill Partington (left) and Lauren Codling
Gordon Marsden with Jill Partington (left) and Lauren Codling

A Blackpool MP has hailed apprenticeships as the key to helping young people across the resort build vital skills and progress in the world of work.

Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden marked National Apprenticeship Week with meetings looking at schemes involving two young people, which has given them opportunities to train as an apprentices.

Mr Marsden, who is a former shadow skills minister, met with Lauren Codling at the Woodhub Social Enterprise, in Stanley Road, central Blackpool.

She has been doing a Level 3 advanced apprenticeship in business administration.

The Woodhub is a social enterprise initiative of the Fylde Cost Carers Centre – and the wood products made or adapted there go to help fund the work of the Carers Centre, including supporting carers across Blackpool.

After meeting Lauren, who is on track to complete her apprenticeship this spring and then continue to work until mid-2016, as a business manager with the Carers Trust, Mr Marsden said: “It’s been really heartening to talk through her progress with Lauren and her Team Leader Jill Partington from North Lancashire Training Group, who have carried through the apprenticeship as her training provider.

“Together with her previous Level 2 qualification, she has clearly now got an excellent base of transferable skills which will stand her in great stead for her future.

“It’s also a compliment to North Lancashire training for giving her a rounded apprenticeship experience.”

Lauren said: “I really think the opportunities I’ve had from the Carers Centre and Lancashire Training, and particularly here at the Woodhub have been so valuable – particularly on the challenges of time management and balancing responsibilities.

“Everything I have done and learnt has progressed me so much.”

Earlier in the week, Mr Marsden went in his current capacity as Shadow Transport Minister to visit the huge CrossRail project in London, to discuss the programme with managers and go down into the tunnel there with Freddy Addo, who is currently completing his Level 2 NVQ apprenticeship at the Farringdon site as a steel fixer.