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Pendennis Shipyard apprentice Adam Hall (22) will be demonstrating his cabinet making skills during the Skills Show at the NEC later this month (19-21 November) as part of the World Skills competition.

Adam Hall applying his craft at Pendennis Shipyard
Adam Hall applying his craft at Pendennis Shipyard

Sponsored by Axminster Tools & Machinery (AT&M), Adam won a regional heat in July and will now compete against 11 or 12 other apprentices from around the UK. To support Adam, AT&M have supplied him with a selection of quality hand tools including several planes from the prestigious American manufacturer Lie-Nielsen and clamps from Axminster’s own Trade Clamps range.

The Skills Show hosts the UK World Skills competitions. Adam was runner-up two years ago in the Cabinet Making section and just missed out on competing at the world finals in São Paolo, Brazil. Skills competitions are held around the world to showcase and inspire world class excellence in skills and introduce young people to a variety of skilled careers.

Adam said: “World Skills is a unique opportunity which you would not find elsewhere. Being in a competition environment makes you up your game as you are being watched all the time. It allows you to perform to a very high level.”

Pendennis Shipyard has become a major employer in the Falmouth area. Founded in 1988, the Shipyard is well established and highly regarded in the world of boat and ship building. Over the years it has invested in both facilities and employees to become one of the most impressive and reputable super-yacht build and refit companies in the world.

Throughout its history, the Shipyard has completed a diverse range of prestigious projects and been presented with many awards both for its work and apprenticeship scheme. Its heritage and experience now include over 200 refit projects and 30 custom built yachts.

Pendennis takes huge pride in its award winning apprenticeship scheme, having beaten off in the past some big companies including Rolls Royce and BT. It has trained over 160 young men and women in the key industry trades over the past 17 years. The scheme focuses on the continual development of its workforce, maintaining the world class standards which the Shipyard adheres to in all aspects of a custom build or refit. Just under one third of the current workforce have been trained by this programme, including many who have progressed to senior positions such as project engineers, trade and project managers.

During the first year of their apprenticeship, apprentices can try five different trades: joinery, engineering, welding and fabrication, electrics and surface finishing. Adam chose joinery and is now in his final year of a four year scheme.

Joinery Manager and former apprentice, Tristan Jones said: “At Pendennis we look for high quality apprentices. There is an intake every two years. Adam’s year was particularly strong with five of the six apprentices choosing joinery, supported by qualifications they are able to gain at Cornwall College.” Out of an intake of 10 apprentices when Tristan joined the first apprenticeship scheme in 1998, four are still employed at the Shipyard.

L to R: Joinery Manager Tristan Jones and apprentice Adam Hall
L to R: Joinery Manager Tristan Jones and apprentice Adam Hall

Apprentices gain City & Guilds and NVQ3 in Furniture Studies by the end of their apprenticeship and may be offered the chance to study at degree level. The Pendennis programme also covers community projects, charity fundraising, Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award and RYA qualifications.

To follow Adam’s progress, visit the Skills Show at the NEC, Birmingham 19-21 November 2015.

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