Taster session to open doors for next generation of construction workers proves a success in Hartlepool

A Hartlepool company that provides a stepping stone for young people into the construction industry showcased what they have to offer at a successful open day.

Pro-active Training on the Parkview Industrial Estate opened its doors when around 50 potential workers of the future took part in taster sessions.

They got to roll their sleeves up and have a go at bricklaying, groundwork and joinery.

The three trades are taught in Pro-active Training’s 12-week traineeship course to young people aged 16-18 with the majority gaining apprenticeships at the end.

Centre manager Andy Fordham said: “We had around 20 people come through the doors on the morning and had 25 confirmed for the afternoon session, so we are very pleased with that.

“It is good that they have been having a go. This is what it has been all about, letting them experience it themselves.

From left tutor Jon Lofthouse, tutor Michael Bramley, general manager Andy Fordham (behind), tutor Adrian Armstrong and tutor Peter Metcalfe

From left tutor Jon Lofthouse, tutor Michael Bramley, general manager Andy Fordham (behind), tutor Adrian Armstrong and tutor Peter Metcalfe

“We want not only to promote the centre but our big ethos is we want to give people an opportunity.

“Too many people close doors in young people’s faces but if you are interested in construction we will help you.

“If they think this is what they want to sign up for we will invite them back for an information, advice and guidance session.”

Andy added Pro-active Training, which launched in 2014, has a good track record of success.

Pro-active Training open day to help young people in Hartlepool into work. Harlea Murray having a go at bricklaying.

Pro-active Training open day to help young people in Hartlepool into work. Harlea Murray having a go at bricklaying.

They have seen 123 trainees progress into an apprenticeship.

And they currently have 140 16-18 year-olds on the programme who are employed with local businesses as apprentices.

Some of those currently taking the construction course acted as supervisors for the open day visitors.

They included Jack Twizell, 17, from Billingham.

Scott McDonnell takes part in the joinery taster session.

Scott McDonnell takes part in the joinery taster session.

He said of the course: “It’s spot on, the best thing I have ever done.

“The tutors are very helpful and I have learned a lot in the short time I have been here.”
He added: “I learned about it on social media. I came here to do groundwork but when I tried joinery I decided I wanted to do that.”

Training centre manager Andy Fordham (left)

Training centre manager Andy Fordham (left)