New drive to encourage more work-based learning

Andrew Stone, John Pike, Vicky Lofthouse and Sue Keenan.
Andrew Stone, John Pike, Vicky Lofthouse and Sue Keenan.

Business bosses have teamed up with Lancaster and Morecambe College to encourage more companies to take on apprentices.

People from 20 firms from across the district attended a launch event organised to give an insight into the recuitment process.

It was arranged by Lancaster District Chamber of Commerce, which says employers can benefit from earn-while-you-learn programmes.

Chamber manager Vicky Lofthouse said: “By working with local businesses, the chamber are looking to spread the message that hiring an apprentice is not only a great way for learners to gain real industry experience and a qualification, it can also help a business to grow its own talent and contribute to the local business community.”

The organisation is also working with the National Apprenticeship Service (NAS) to raise the profile of work-based learning in North Lancashire.

Morecambe-based GVS Filter Technology UK, which employs apprentices, hosted the event.

John Pike, executive committee director of UK operations, said: “Our apprentices receive the best external training available to provide the basic skills that we need them to have while also living day to day within our organisation.

“This enables them to take on board the specific needs of our business and to grow and flourish in a spirit of mutually beneficial partnership and career development”.

NAS representative Andrew Stone talked about how apprenticeships worked and Sue Keenan from Lancaster and Morecambe College explained how it as an education provider helps match candidates with employers.

The chamber will hold an apprenticeship day on March 11 to coincide with National Apprenticeship Week, which runs between March 7 and 11.

Events will be hosted by the district’s two MPs - Eric Ollerenshaw and David Morris and there will be a range of other activities.

Businesses interested in finding out more about apprenticeships are asked to contact the chamber on 01524 381331.