KMF held its annual Apprentice Awards evening Wednesday to recognise the hard work that the students have put in over the past 12 months and present the 2nd and 4th-year apprentices with their certificates.
Figures show that in the North West region; which covers the home of Newcastle under Lyme-based KMF (Precision Sheet Metal), the numbers of apprenticeships awarded so far in 2013 have decreased by some 11% compared to 2012.
This makes the efforts that businesses, such as KMF are putting into apprentice training even more important and the benefits and successes of that training were highlighted at the company's apprentice awards evening, held recently at Stoke City's Britannia Stadium.
In addition to the ten apprentices receiving their formal certificates of training the company also incentivises its trainees by holding year-long monitoring of punctuality for its individual and year group Attendance & Punctuality Awards.
These awards were presented this year by Sara Williams, Chief Executive of North Staffs Chamber of Commerce.
The Year Group Award went to Josh Wheatley, Joseph Ward, Jack Littleton and Matthew Hayes who were all first-year apprentices. The individual award went to Hayden Williamson, who achieved an attendance record of 99.5 per cent.
The company also asks its team leaders to choose winners of the Team Leader Choice Award. This goes to the individuals from each year group that have shown a mix of personal attributes such as reliability; honesty; can do attitude; team player; good time management; supportive to others and has good communication skills.
This year's awards were presented by Mark Haig, External Verifier, EAL Limited to 4th-year apprentice Callan Evans; 3rd-year apprentice Hayden Williamson; 2nd-year apprentice Adam Ellis and 1st-year apprentice Joe Ward.
The main prize of KMFs Apprentice of the Year went to an outstanding candidate with consistent exam marks in the 90% range when the national average was closer to 60%. The award for KMF Apprentice of the Year was presented to Joe Pemberton by KMF Director John Tilling.
The evening also included a special mention for Matt Page, who completed his apprenticeship in 2012 but was recently part of Team UK in the final of World Skills in Leipzig, Germany, where he represented the UK in sheet metal technology, the first from the UK to do so for over 20 years.
Managing Director Gareth Higgins presented Matt with a memento of his achievement and also announced that two other KMF apprentices, Harley Brian and Ryan Murphy would be put forward to compete for a place on Team UK when World Skills heads to Brazil in 2015.
"Matt's presence at World Skills 2013 was a reflection of the hard work and dedication that KMF and its apprentices put into their training, and it was a fantastic achievement on Matt's part. We are already planning for the next event and hope that Harley or Ryan can go on to represent Team GB in Brazil," says Gareth Higgins.