Reaseheath College and Alstom celebrate successful apprenticeship programme during National Apprenticeship Week

Senior managers from leading rail engineering company Alstom joined training providers at Reaseheath College in Nantwich to celebrate the success of the company’s progressive apprenticeship programme during National Apprenticeship Week.

Alstom is a global leader in the transportation sector and has 37 UK sites including  Crewe Works, which is a major local employer. To ensure a supply of next generation skilled and qualified rail engineering technicians, the company has collaborated with Reaseheath’s apprenticeship training team to create a bespoke, high quality and continuously evolving training programme.

Over 40  talented apprentices from sites throughout the North West, the Midlands and as far as London  are currently on the three year programme, which delivers specialist technical training both at Reaseheath College and at their workplace. Alstom’s apprentices are based at Reaseheath’s Engineering Apprenticeship Academy, where the company has a designated rail workshop staffed by an industry served training team.

To celebrate the success of the training programme, Alstom’s Apprenticeship Development Manager, Jon Middleton, and General Manager of Crewe Works, Mark Derbyshire, joined second year apprentices as they improved their practical skills in the workshop.

And there were further celebrations later that day when Alstom was crowned Large Employer of the Year at Reaseheath’s Apprenticeship Awards ceremony in recognition of the company’s outstanding dedication to the learning and development of its apprentices.

Jon Middleton said: “This is a long established and very successful partnership and we very much appreciate Reaseheath’s support and expertise. Apprentices are hugely important to our work across the UK and our apprenticeship programme ensures we can address national skills gaps by building a pipeline of talent for the future.

“We were thrilled to receive the Large Employer Award. Our thriving partnership with Reaseheath is helping us find our future talent. Apprentices are key to growth in our organisation so this support is very important to us.”

Mark Derbyshire added: “At Crewe Works we are committed to nurturing the best young talent and encouraging them to thrive and grow. We are continually expanding and offer fantastic opportunities for young people, no matter their gender, to work up to senior management level. We also proactively promote diversity to better reflect the communities we operate in.

“Our Crewe factory is equipped with the latest generation machinery and our apprentices are developing key skills to enable them to work on cutting edge technical and digital systems.”

Simon Bishop, Reaseheath’s Engineering Training Manager, commented: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with forward thinking employers such as Alstom. Through collaboration, we are ensuring that we co-design the best programme to deliver industry standard skills and work ready experiences. We believe that this is the best way we can support both apprentices and employers.”

Apprentice Louis Eccleston, who was influenced from a young age by Crewe’s history as a railway town, said: “I enjoy all aspects of rail engineering. You’re always learning something new and interesting, and there are plenty of opportunities for a permanent role after completing your programme.

“I chose an apprenticeship over university because I liked the idea of earning and learning at the same time, and the fact that there’s a good career pathway. The programme also encourages you to develop life skills and social skills alongside a deeper understanding of engineering.”

Fellow apprentice Matthew Vickers, also a passionate engineer, added: “One of the best things about the apprenticeship is that you learn from experienced professionals both at Alstom and at Reaseheath. I’ve learned so much already, and this will help me progress within the engineering sector.”

One of the country’s leading apprentice trainers, Reaseheath currently trains 788 apprentices within the land based industries and works in partnership with hundreds of large, medium and small employers.

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