Project Scotland

New apprentices help to tackle “greatest challenge”

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FORSTER Roofing’s first female roofing apprentice is among the latest intake of apprentices at the firm’s Brechin-based Skills Academy.

Adelle Martin, from Denny, joined eleven other apprentices from around the country, describing it as a “great opportunity” to break into the construction sector.

“We need to build more homes in Scotland, to meet an increasing demand, but the industry wide skills shortage presents the greatest challenge to achieving growth” said Neil McIvor, Forster construction director.

“At Forster, we have a clear vision to create our own workforce that are trained to the Forster Standard, and taught to work the Forster way”.

The company said the two year Modern Apprenticeship in Roof Tiling for New Build combines “on-the-job structured learning, with contextualised off-site training” at the Brechin academy.

“The qualification was designed specifically to teach and nurture the skills required for roofing new homes in Scotland,” explained human resources director Maureen Douglas, “and is supported by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and the Scottish Building Apprenticeship and Training Council (SBATC).

“Our latest intake of roofing apprentices has grown our total number to 23, all of which have been recruited within the last two years. Looking ahead, we intend to take on and train six new apprentices every year, and we’ve already started recruiting for our 2017 intake.”

Adelle Martin said, “The Forster apprenticeship programme provides a great opportunity to get into construction, and I’ve really enjoyed meeting different people and working as part of a squad.” Ross Henderson, from Airdrie, is another new apprentice. He added, “I’ve been interested in working in the construction industry for quite a while. Even before joining the Forster apprenticeship programme, I completed a general construction course at college.”

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