Carpentry apprentices from Accrington and Rossendale College have been working with Hambling Construction to bring life back to the old fire station in Accrington Town Centre with a £2 million refurbishment of the grade II listed building.
The building, which has been closed for over 10 years, is being transformed by the college apprentices alongside Hambling Construction. It will become a warehouse and retail area for Totally Wicked, an e-cigarette company who manufacture and distribute e-cigarettes and e-cigarette liquids.
“I wouldn’t be given opportunities like this if I was studying A-levels or anything,” said James Fishwick, third year apprentice, “I chose to do an apprenticeship instead as I enjoy the physical aspect of learning more than the academic. I don’t struggle with the academic side, this is just preference. Accrington and Rossendale College have put me in great stead to be honest. It’s a big project and has kept me busy for the last 18 months, I really enjoy it and equally enjoy the one day a week I spend on site at the college.”
Recently moving in to new premises and with “top notch machinery” on-site at the college, students who decide to study apprenticeships are, not only in a real-life working environment daily, but are taught by fully-qualified joiners and construction workers.
Accrington and Rossendale College have a reputation nationwide for their construction courses, with students recently winning a regional award at the Institute of Carpenters Craft Competition.
Will Long, first year apprentice, said about the college:
“I really enjoy it. I’d recommend a carpentry apprenticeship through Accrington and Rossendale College to anyone. The place we are refurbing at the moment actually bought the machinery we use from the college which shows really that they invest in decent machinery for students to use. I chose to do an apprenticeship because I don’t want to sit at a desk all day – I’m happier doing things that are more physical. The college has definitely delivered with helping me on my way.”
For more information about apprenticeships that Accrington and Rossendale College have to offer visit http://www.accross.ac.uk/apprenticeship/