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Yorkshire Water launches biggest ever apprentice scheme

Yorkshire Water has announced that it will be creating 160 apprenticeships over the next five years, in the biggest scheme of its kind ever launched by the company.

Yorkshire Water apprentice George CowellYorkshire Water apprentice George Cowell

The majority of the new positions will be in operational roles as Yorkshire Water looks to recruit the next generation of skilled employees to ensure the future of its service in the region. The scheme w launched at the utility’s Esholt Wastewater Treatment Works today (Jan 23) and recruitment for the roles will start in May.

Richard Flint, Yorkshire Water CEO, said: “Many people may not be aware just what a diverse range of skills we have within the company – from qualified engineers to geologists to our talented operators.

“In fact, we have some of the most skilled colleagues that you’ll find in any industry and it’s so important to us as a business that we look to preserve this specialist knowledge for the future.

“That’s why we are delighted to announce these 160 apprenticeships - it’s great news for young people and for the Yorkshire economy. Ours is a company that invests in its people and, having joined as a graduate myself, I know there are endless opportunities to progress and develop here.”

With almost one in five (18.3%) 18-24 year olds across Yorkshire not in education, employment or training (NEETs), the announcement is welcome news for the region, and will also help the company prepare for the skills gap being predicted in the utility sector by 2025 caused by an ageing workforce.

Stuart Andrew, MP for Pudsey, Horsforth and Aireborough, gave his backing to the scheme as he attended its launch. He said: “I am so pleased that Yorkshire Water are investing so much in apprenticeships.

“Since the election, there have been over 3000 more apprenticeships in the Pudsey, Horsforth and Aireborough area. With companies like Yorkshire Water realising the potential of apprenticeships, it is excellent news for our area, and I am proud to support the new scheme.”

While there will be a variety of opportunities in a number of different areas, the focus will be on skilled operational roles to prepare for the retirement of employees currently in those positions.

The recruitment drive is a significant step up in Yorkshire Water’s apprentice programme which saw 59 apprentices join in the last five years.

Author: James Brockett,
Tags: Yorkshire Water , skills

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