Chippenham apprentices honoured for creating summer house for special school

This Is Wiltshire: Nick Clegg and Tim Campbell, former winner of The Apprentice, present the Brathay Apprentice Challenge Community Project Award to Redrow South West Nick Clegg and Tim Campbell, former winner of The Apprentice, present the Brathay Apprentice Challenge Community Project Award to Redrow South West

Apprentices who helped transform an old shed at St Nicholas School, Chippen-ham, into a summer house have won a national award in recognition of their work.

Nine teenagers employed by Redrow were presented with the trophy by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and Tim Campbell, a former winner of the BBC series The Apprentice, at the National Apprentice Awards at the NEC in Birmingham.

The summer house is used by members of after-school club Ask St Nicholas. The school has been the charity of the year of the South West division of the housebuilders for two years and it often holds fundraising events.

The builders stepped in to help when it was feared the after-school club might have to close because of a lack of funding. Over the past two years Redrow has raised more than £80,000.

Work on the old shed involved a team of six apprentice carpenters, one brick-layer, an electrician and an office apprentice. They persuaded local suppliers to make donations to keep costs down. The project won the team the Brathay Apprentice Challenge Community Project Award at the awards ceremony.

Carpenter and joiner apprentice Charlie Baker, 19, said: “This was a fantastic project and all went according to plan.

“Towards the end of the project we met the head boy and girl who were really excited about what we had done and they enjoyed doing a spot of painting inside the summer house too.”

St Nicholas School is a purpose-built specialist school for children aged four to 19 who have severe, complex or profound and multiple learning disabilities and has 72 students.

Richard Beadsmoore, Redrow’s group training and development manager, said: “We’re delighted that our commitment to investing in the talent of young people and their training and development have been recognised with these awards.

“An apprenticeship is a great way to get onto the career ladder and this year alone we’ve recruited around 50 apprentices, while many of our former trainees have gone on to build a successful career with Redrow.”

St Nicholas also gained a Lloyds Bank Community Award of £3,000.

n Lloyds winners: Page 22

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