Chilfen Group recently held its first Apprentice Open Day at Chilfen Joinery facilities in Letchworth. The event, which was organised to support training opportunities for local youth and promote apprenticeship programmes within Chilfen Group, was launched in partnership with the Samuel Whitbread Academy in Bedfordshire.
A total of fourteen Design & Technology Resistant Material students, comprising twelve from Year 10 and two from Year 12, participated in the half-day event, which was also attended by representatives from apprenticeship providers, Hawk Training.
The students were presented with the opportunity to tour the Chilfen Joinery facilities, covering the design office, sales and marketing and the production areas of robotics, automation, CNC machining and hand finishing.
The tour was followed by an interactive session, where Chilfen Joinery employees, who had previously held apprenticeship positions within the company, shared their hands-on experiences and engaged in a Q&A session with the visitors. James Merry, who finished his two-and-a-half-year apprenticeship six months ago, and Danny Cockrane, who has been with Chilfen Joinery for over 20 years, starting out as an apprentice at the age of 16, lead the presentation and Q&A sessions and passed down valuable advice to those interested in applying for an apprenticeship.
The Apprentice Open Day, which was a huge success, demonstrated the importance of the manufacturing industry within the UK and opened the minds of the students to the vast opportunities that jobs in the fields of manufacturing, production and operations can offer.
Chilfen Group is keen to turn the Apprentice Open Day into a permanent annual fixture, in line with the group’s long-term commitment to supporting and nurturing growth across Hertfordshire and its surrounding areas.