Willmott Dixon’s investment in trade skills was further illustrated with eighteen apprentices this week graduating with flying colours in their NVQ studies to take up full time jobs in the company.

The Group’s repair and maintenance specialist Willmott Dixon Partnerships has 70 apprentices at various stages of studying for NVQ levels 2 and 3 as part of a commitment to provide skills and jobs to people who live close to its branches. The 18 newly qualified engineers will help deliver the company’s support services to over 150,000 homes.

Plasterer apprentice graduate Toby Lester, 24, from Sutton Coldfield in Birmingham was also picked out for a special award recognising his potential, receiving the ‘Willmott Dixon Has Talent’ title that will allow him to join the company’s management training programme to be groomed as a future leader. Toby said: “Being on an apprenticeship with Willmott Dixon has been a journey in itself – a continual learning process. I am thrilled to have graduated with an NVQ 3 and look forward to joining the management programme

“Willmott Dixon has supported me tremendously from day one on both a professional and personal level. Now that I’m qualified I am looking to continue my learning – the company has provided me with a great grounding to a growing industry.”

Willmott Dixon Partnerships managing director, Mick Williamson, said: “We are long-term investors in the UK’s future and want to leave a lasting legacy in the areas in which we work – and this includes helping to improve employability skills of people. Through our apprenticeship programme and Opening Doors work experience placements, it’s great to see people like these apprentices thrive by gaining real qualifications that set them up with a trade and career for life.

“As a private company, we have strong family values and this includes giving people the very best skills training, even when times are tough and other companies are scaling back their training investment. We work in the heart of communities and believe in investing in the future that creates a lasting legacy. Training and education is a cornerstone of a successful business and we believe that our apprentices are the greatest ambassadors for our company and will help support and grow the business in the future.”