Outstanding engineer

Fort Vale's Apprentice of the Year Stephen Smith, with (left) Andrew Bryce, Director for Innovation, and Alan Emerton.
Fort Vale's Apprentice of the Year Stephen Smith, with (left) Andrew Bryce, Director for Innovation, and Alan Emerton.
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A TALENTED young Clitheroe man has been given a top award for his outstanding skills in engineering.

Stephen Smith has been named Apprentice of the Year by his employer, global leader Fort Vale Engineering, based at Calder Vale Park, Simonstone. The award celebrates Stephen’s outstanding commitment to his training over the past 12 months.

Commenting on his success, Stephen said: “I’m really proud to have won the Apprentice of the Year award – I’m very happy that all my hard work has paid off.

“I’m moving into my fourth and final year as a Fort Vale apprentice and I’ve found the company very supportive of all apprentices. I’ve received excellent training so far and feel like a real part of the team. I’m looking forward to my final year and to making my way up the Fort Vale career ladder.”

Alan Emerton, Apprentice Training Manager at Fort Vale, said: “Stephen is fully deserving of this award. He is a consistent, diligent employee who always gives 100%. Over the course of his apprenticeship he has become an integral member of the team and no-one ever has a bad word to say about him or the quality of his work.

“Not only has he shown complete commitment to his role inside the company, Stephen also volunteers to take part in activities both inside and outside working hours.”

Fort Vale Engineering’s Modern Apprenticeship Programme is delivered in partnership with Training 2000. The company has taken on apprentices every year for the past 36 years and is fully committed to their training and development. In fact 71 of the current employees joined from school, college or university and three have even made the Board of Directors.