Merseyside engineering firm Cammell Laird announced its largest ever intake of apprentices since it restarted its apprenticeship program in 2008.
Birkenhead-based Cammell Laird has taken on 22 apprentices working across a range of skills which brings the total number within the business to 71.
Around 50 apprentices have graduated into highly skilled, qualified tradesmen over the past five years with Cammell Laird and are still actively employed with the business.
Last year, Cammell Laird recruited 18 apprentices and had a total of 64 working for the company. The total number of apprentices who have either graduated or are still studying with Cammell Laird now sits at 121.
Cammell Laird HR manager Danny Hart said the new starters are the vital next generation of the engineering services company.
The new apprentices, ages 16-23, will study at Cammell Laird and the neighboring Maritime and Engineering College North West (MECNW) in Birkenhead.
Six of the apprentices are working as mechanical fitters, four as pipe fitters and 12 as boiler makers on the four-year program.
Mr. Hart said, "Our structured apprenticeship program combines class-based learning and critically time spent in the business learning how to put their new skills to real use."
He continued, "We have tremendous faith in the industry experience of the tutors and the fantastic facilities at MECNW, complemented by our on-site mentors at Cammell Laird who carry out the foundation training for the apprentices with the college."
The company operates a “buddy system” whereby the new recruits will learn alongside other experienced staff members.
Cammell Laird chief executive John Syvret said the fact 50 apprentices have moved into full-time employment is testimony to its investment in young people.
"They are the future of our business as we seek to diversify and win work in sectors such as offshore renewables and civil nuclear," Mr. Syvret said. "Having well-trained, enthusiastic apprentices is fundamental to our ability to grow and fulfil our potential. Stellar multi billion pound opportunities exist in the engineering and maritime market over the next 20-30 years."