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New apprentices begin building council careers

A new team of apprentices started building a bright future at Swansea Council today.

Apprentices2018

The 15 recruits will train for four years as the council develops a new generation of carpenters, plumbers, electricians, plasterers and multi-trade personnel.

They will work on projects such as constructing top quality new schools, building new energy-efficient council homes and improving existing council housing.

Jen Raynor, the council's cabinet member for education improvement, learning and skills, said: "Hiring apprentices is an investment in the future of the council and the city.

"We've been recruiting apprentices for a number of years and applications are always oversubscribed thanks to our reputation for first-class training and producing high-quality trade and craftspeople.

 "We now have more than 100 apprentices working across a range of council services - from healthcare to carpentry.

"I wish our new recruits well and encourage others to apply in future. Of course, that includes women who - like men - can benefit from apprenticeships in all areas of the council's work."

Andrea Lewis, the council's cabinet member for homes and energy, said: "This new intake will build on the hugely successful apprenticeship programme run by our corporate building and property services team.

"They'll work on key schemes such as high-quality new council housing built to a new exacting Swansea Standard and bringing existing homes up to the Welsh Housing Quality Standard.

"It's an example of this council building for the future excellence, welfare and sustainability of our services and communities; it allows our staff to shine and gives us a greater chance to spend money where it's needed, on public services."

Almost 320 people applied to be an apprentice on this occasion. The successful candidates excelled in a robust selection process which focused on key qualities such as a positive attitude, aptitude, motivation and application.

Their recruitment builds on a multi-award winning apprenticeship programme run by the council's corporate building services team.

Its sustainable approach has led to a continuous year-on-year recruitment of 15 years.

Since 2003, the team has recruited more than 190 apprentices as part of its succession planning. The new recruits go on to replace around 45% of trades people retiring from corporate building services.

New multi-trade apprentice Keiran Morgan, aged 18, of Mumbles, has just completed A levels at Olchfa School.

He said: "I've always seen the apprenticeship route as a strong career option.

"A lot of students from my year in sixth form are going down the university route but I wanted to learn practical skills in the working world."

New plumbing apprentice Sam Williams, aged 20, of Morriston, formerly worked as a plumber in the private sector.

He said: "This apprenticeship will give me and ther other new recruits a solid future in our trades.

"The council is well-known for developing skills and the trades people here have a reputation as being amongst the best around."

Photo Swansea Council's new apprentices, left, with, from left, the council's interim head of corporate building services Nigel Williams and cabinet members Andrea Lewis and Jen Raynor.

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