New Apprentices join W.D.M. Limited
W.D.M. Limited has continued a tradition that started seven decades ago by taking on two new apprentices.
The Company was founded in 1945 and took on its first trainee in 1946. The two latest apprentices are 18-years-old Samuel Belcher and Rhys Brooks, who’s just 16.
Sam, who comes originally from the Reading area but now lives at Fishponds in Bristol, is on a three year apprenticeship in fabrication and welding. A former pupil of the BT Academy at Filton, he attends the City of Bristol College one day a week as part of his training.
Rhys, from Mangotsfield, is apprenticed for three years as a heavy vehicle technician and developed his interest in engines and vehicles from his father. The middle of three children, Rhys went to Mangotsfield Secondary School – he now attends S & B College on day release for the academic element of his training.
From April this year the government is introducing a levy on employers with a pay bill of more than £3m to encourage more companies to take on apprentices. In 2015/16 more than half a million started apprenticeships, up 9,500 on the previous year, but there is still a shortage of people going into engineering and construction.
Chris Gardiner, Managing Director of W.D.M. Limited, says the Company has always believed in offering apprenticeships.
“Encouraging youngsters to come into engineering is so important – not only to us, but also for UK plc. We started out as a general engineering organisation, able to turn our hand to any challenge."
“Today, the focus is on manufacturing and maintaining highway survey equipment and vehicles, so we also need to ensure we have trained engineers coming off the staff production line.” he said.