I feel sorry for the young apprentices of today who have been granted a plumbing course at their local college without actually having been given any actual employment. Over the last 3 years I and many other small businesses have received letters from some of these youngsters seeking employment as they are coming to the end of their 2 year college course and need to be employed in order to complete their NVQ in Plumbing.

It is giving these school leavers false hope by taken them on the NVQ course when they don’t have any employment. The colleges know this but don’t seem to care. I had a long telephone call with one very upset Mother asking why the colleges agree to give them the course if they know they can’t complete their NVQ without being employed. What do I say in response.

When I started back in 1970 you first got a job with an employer and then signed up for your apprenticeship. We went to college 1 day a week and worked the other 4, recognising that plumbing is a practical craft first so your skill level increased as your theoretical knowledge increased. Nowadays, these kids do most of their theory with a bit of college practical and very little on site experience.  Common sense would dictate that to do a proper apprenticeship you need to be employed first.

I for one, am very grateful to W.S. lowdell and F.Geering & Son for the apprenticeship I served.