Newark-based Derry Building Services recognises outstanding apprentices for their efforts
Dedicated workers and talented young apprentices have been recognised for their efforts and skills.
Electrical and mechanical engineering apprentices who have excelled at Derry Building Services gathered at the Deincourt Hotel in Newark for an awards ceremony.
Every year the Newark-based company takes on apprentices, providing them with the skills and knowledge needed to pursue a career in the construction industry.
Brian Hughes, Derry Building Services director, said: “We are like a family, this is a family business because we all achieve together.
“It’s a team effort right from the youngest apprentice, all the way up to the most senior person in the business.
“It’s fantastic to have people stay with us for so long — our staff retention is 90% and in this industry it’s very easy to move on and get another job because there is a shortage of skills out there, but our principles help us retain people recognising their efforts.
“So we’ve been celebrating the success of our apprentices and their input to our business.
“We have a lot of very good groups and we feel that this gives them a sense of loyalty.
“We meet them when they leave school and they’re all under pressure, but we see them develop from these young boys until they come out confident, qualified and mature.
“Everybody in this industry started out as and apprentice, somebody gave me that chance once.
“They’re all a cracking group that any business would be proud to have working for them.”
The awards were a chance to acknowledge and reward the work of young people entering the industry as apprentices.
Jamie Clews was awarded Stage 4 Electrical Apprentice of the Year, and said: “I’m an apprentice electrician and I’ve just qualified, so I'm happy and looking forward to progressing.
“It’s been really good here. I’ve learnt lots of new skills from people with lots of experience who taught me everything I know.
“I thought this would be the best way to learn a trade because I always wanted to be an electrician and Derry Building Services is a good company and they’ve been able to put me through it really easily.”
After being named Mechanical Apprentice of the Year, Will Favill said: “To be recognised is important to be because there are a lot of people in my years and the stand out isn’t easy.
“The training has been faultless. What you learn is never ending, even this week I’m still learning new things and if you’ve ever got any question you can just fire away and there is always someone there to answer and show you.
“This is the only place in the area that offers this specific course. If I wanted to do it anywhere else I’d have to go to Leeds, so it’s quite niche and unique, which is great.”
It wasn’t just the youth being receiving award. A number of dedicated workers were recognised for their long service with the company.
Design manager, Matt Hallam, spent has 25 years with the company and said: “It’s excellent and it is a long time, but to stay in one place for 25 years is credit to the company and the fact that they value us and honour with awards like this is great.
“I started at 17-years-old, pretty much straight from school and I’ve matured and grown along with the company.
“When I first joined there were only about 20 of us in the design office and now we’re up at over 50, with total staff around 160.
“I’ve also had an active role in training the apprentices and I’ve seen some of them progress into managerial roles and made some really good, strong friendships too.
“It’s even better to see the youth coming through into the industry, because that’s what it’s all about.”
Apprentice award winners:
Will Favill, Mechanical Apprentice of the Year; Joe Burrell, Mechanical Achievement Award; Declan Carnelley, Highly Commended Award. Electrical Apprentice of the Year (Stage 1), Zak Daubney; (Stage 2) Ethan Timmins; (Stage 3) Jake Jarrett; (Stage 4) Jamie Clews.
Long service award winners:
25 year of service; Gary Hunt, plant department manager; Matt Hallam, design manager; Trevor Ball, electrical estimator; and Peter Wragg, senior CAD engineer.
10 years of service; Luke Fearn, senior project manager; Dean Turner, senior project manager; Samuel Blewitt, electrician; and Chris Lee, design engineer.