Glasgow carpenter named Scotland’s top building apprentice

2014 SBATC Apprenticeship Award winners 2
(Pictured L-R): Construction Specialist Apprentice of the Year Craig McVeagh; Adult Apprentice of the Year Daniel Deavy; SBATC Apprentice of the Year and winner of the James Birnie Award for Craft Excellence Shaun Kennedy; Civil Engineering Apprentice of the Year Sean Melville

A 19-year-old carpentry and joinery apprentice from Glasgow has been named this year’s SBATC Apprentice of the Year, receiving the coveted James Birnie award for Craft Excellence at a special ceremony at the Scottish Parliament.

Shaun Kennedy was nominated for the award by his employer, Mactaggart & Mickel, in recognition of his natural enthusiasm for the job and the outstanding quality of his work. Currently in the final year of a four-year apprenticeship, Shaun was also praised for his excellent organisational skills and ability to plan ahead

Now in their 15th year, the SBATC Apprenticeship Awards are organised by the Scottish Building Apprenticeship and Training Council (SBATC) to recognise the considerable talents, skills and abilities of construction apprentices working across Scotland. The Awards assess candidates according to their practical and academic ability alongside other important skills such as organisation, communication and the ability to perform in a team.

Established in 1934 to regulate the working conditions, wages, recruitment and training of apprenticeships within the Scottish construction industry, The Scottish Building and Apprenticeship and Training Council is also celebrating its 80th birthday this year.

The awards ceremony included presentations for three other award categories. Sean Melville, an apprentice technician from Inverness who works for Morgan Sindall, received the 2014 Civil Engineering Apprentice of the Year award. Daniel Deavy, an apprentice roof slater and tiler with A. Menzies and Sons in Glasgow was named Adult Apprentice of the Year. Meanwhile, Dunblane-based built-up felt roofing apprentice Craig McVeagh, who works for family firm Permatop Roofing, received the 2014 Construction Specialist apprentice award.

Speaking on behalf of main award winner Shaun Kennedy’s employer, Mactaggart & Mickel HR Director Marion Forbes said, “We’re delighted for Shaun that he’s won this prestigious award. He is an outstanding individual overall and has excelled throughout his apprenticeship. He clearly loves his job and takes genuine pride in his craft. When Shaun is set a task, there’s always confidence that he’ll complete it to the highest standard.”

SBATC Chairman Gavin Hay added, “The 2014 SBATC Apprentice of the Year Awards have been the highlight of our 80th year celebrations. With so many excellent candidates nominated, it’s an opportunity to pay tribute to the outstanding talents of apprentices working throughout the Scottish construction sector. My personal congratulations go out to all of our winners and I wish them the very best for a long and rewarding career in Scottish construction.”