The family-owned contractor’s continued commitment to apprenticeship schemes has seen 14 new apprentices join the business in 2022.
North West contractor Seddon has recruited 14 new apprentices into the business in 2022.
It sees Seddon, listed as one of the UK’s top 100 apprenticeship employers of 2022, continuing to pave the way for new professionals to enter the industry.
The new recruits comprise three painters, one plasterer, two bricklayers, two joiners, two trainee site managers and four trainee quantity surveyors. Together, they have been gaining first-hand experience in the construction industry from a contractor who has been trading for 125 years.
Chloe Ainscough, 16, Apprentice Painter
At just 16, apprentice painter Chloe Ainscough is the youngest apprenticeship of the intake, who spoke about benefitting from continuing her education away from the classroom.
“It’s really valuable because you get to earn as you learn and it’s a lot more hands-on than college and university. Working alongside experienced staff members has been really comforting, knowing you have someone you can ask questions to and who can support you when you’re struggling and you learn new tricks that you wouldn’t learn anywhere else.”
Saajan Singh, 18, Apprentice Bricklayer
18-year-old bricklayer apprentice Saajan Singh, meanwhile, has thrived with the diversity his role offers him. He said:
“Every single day is different which I really enjoy. The people that I work with always talk to me and support me and by watching them too, I get a real understanding of what's going on. I feel like apprenticeships are a fast track to get you moving forward in life.”
During their induction week, all apprentices also took part in two community clean-up days on Seddon’s Sale West site, where it is constructing 79 two-storey properties within an existing housing development. Working directly alongside high-level professionals – including Jonathan Seddon and Ceris Esplen from Irwell Valley Homes – the community days help instil Seddon’s community-driven values into its apprentices from the start.
Open to 16-year-olds and upwards, apprenticeship courses last two years and happen in partnership with three colleges - Salford City College, Wolverhampton University and South & City College Birmingham - with Seddon establishing a clear path into employment with the contractor after graduation. Since Seddon’s partnership with Salford City College began in 2017, of the 127 Seddon apprentices trained, 117 then progressed into full-time roles within the company.
Nicola Hodkinson, director and owner at Seddon, said:
“We have no upper age limit for our apprenticeship schemes, meaning the diversity of people who walk through our doors is vast. From 16-year-olds looking to continue their education in a practical-based environment to a 51-year-old who wanted a career change last August via a plumbing apprenticeship, we’ve seen it all and we thrive off the fresh thinking our apprenticeships bring to the industry.”
Named as one of the UK’s top 100 apprenticeship employers of 2022, alongside well-known brands such as John Lewis Partnership, NatWest Group and ASDA, apprenticeships have been a cornerstone of the business’ operations ever since it hired its first apprentice mechanic in 1951.
Hodkinson continues: “Apprenticeships are hugely important for Seddon and for the wider construction industry, which is why we are so committed to apprenticeship programmes year in, year out. We encourage a diverse range of professionals into the industry, opening important lines of communication between businesses, schools and colleges. We want to continue bringing a dedicated and diverse professional workforce into the industry and apprenticeships are the strongest, most effective and sustainable methods of achieving those goals.”
Seddon currently employs 64 apprentices throughout the business, with the next phase of recruitment due to take place in Spring 2023.