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Spotlight on marine skills and careers as industry announced as Trailblazer

27 October 2014

Government initiative encourages employer led apprenticeship training.

The government’s spotlight shines on marine apprenticeships, with the marine industry being announced as a Trailblazer today.  Within this scheme, a new boatbuilding apprenticeship will be developed by employers working together to design standards in their occupations and sectors. 

Co-ordinated by the British Marine Federation, the employer group for the marine industry will be led by Berthon Boat Company and includes Sunseeker International, Princess Yachts, Pioneer Sailing Trust, Pendennis Shipyard, Fairline Boats, Broom Boats, Green Marine, English Harbour Yachts, Windboats and Cockwells.

Keith Longman of Berthon who is the lead employer for this Trailblazer said. “Our Trailblazer group are excited at the opportunity to influence the training delivery of our apprentices like we have never had before.  The government’s strategy that apprenticeship training should be employer led is welcomed by us and we will embrace the challenge to build a standard that will deliver the competence and behaviours that we require now and in the future."  

The marine industry is one of 37 sectors chosen as a Phase 3 Trailblazer, alongside others such as maritime defence, emergency services and port operations & supply chain.  The industry’s relationship manager will be Jennifer Coupland, Head of BIS/DfE Apprenticeships Unit, confirming the importance of the sector.

Sarah Dhanda, Senior Federation Director at the British Marine Federation said: “This announcement is positive news for the marine industry.  Our apprenticeship scheme is already a recognised success with some 80 young people completing their boatbuilding training each year, as we saw at the recent Graduation Ceremony at the PSP Southampton Boat Show.

“By developing marine apprenticeships further we are ensuring the continued quality of the industry’s training programme.  We will be preserving much needed skills and ensuring the sector is well placed for the future, whilst crucially maintaining a strong profile both in government and within young people.”

The changes will build on existing strengths of the current scheme, but the reformed apprenticeships will meet the needs of the future economy in years to come, ensure apprenticeships are more rigorous and responsive to the needs of employers and ensure they are viewed with the same esteem as University.

Skills Minister Nick Boles enthused “I congratulate the marine industry for the key role they are playing in developing new top-quality apprenticeships. Through the trailblazers initiative boatbuilding companies will collaborate with their industry partners, giving people the skills they need to thrive and providing what our businesses need to compete.”

For more information please contact Camilla Colborne at the BMF on 01784 223627 or email ccolborne@britishmarine.co.uk.

Taken from British Marine Federation News, 23 October 2014

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