Engineering apprentice duo are among country's elite

Charlie (second from left) and Michael (second from right) with other award winning apprentices and their tutor Wayne McIntosh (fourth from left)
Charlie (second from left) and Michael (second from right) with other award winning apprentices and their tutor Wayne McIntosh (fourth from left)

Two engineering apprentices from the Ribble Valley have proved they are among the best in the UK after winning medals at a top competition.

Michael Grimshaw, from Langho, won gold and Charlie Lloyd, who is from Bolton by Bowland, claimed a bronze at the World Skills UK event held at the NEC in Birmingham.

Both are Themis apprentices at Burnley College and during the contest they had to create a small crane or a chiminiea which tested their accuracy, workmanship and time management skills.

In preparation for the contest, which draws hundreds of entrants from across the UK, the apprentices had received bespoke training from Programme Leader in Advanced Engineering Apprenticeships Wayne McIntosh, who has brought extensive experience and knowledge from his career in sheet metal work to the Themis role.

Michael, who works for Darwen-based engineering firm WEC, took the gold medal in the Construction Metalwork category, for his design and construction of a small crane.

He is a former Ribblesdale High School student and is currently in the second year of an Advanced Welding and Fabrications Apprenticeship at Themis at Burnley College. He was formerly employed as a scaffolder and worked in Canada.

He said: “I am honoured to win a gold medal in WSUK. It has been a great experience taking part, testing my skills against the best in the UK. Many thanks to the Training and Development team at WEC, plus the lecturer and trainers at Themis at Burnley College for ensuring I was fully prepared for the contest.”

Charlie is a former pupil of Bowland High School in Clitheroe and he works for The Senator Group, Altham.