The Yorkshire-based plastic reprocessing firm, which employs 104 people at its Castleford site and recycles over 40,000 tonnes of household and commercial waste into reusable material each year, has taken on its first two new apprentices as part of the firm’s mission to develop the next generation of engineers through an ongoing training scheme.
Lewis Davison, 17, has just completed his studies at Campsmount Academy, Doncaster, where he received a distinction in engineering and technology, and Callum Levantiz, 21, switched from a business studies course at Castleford Academy to this apprenticeship opportunity when he realised he was drawn to a career in engineering.
The pair, who began their training at Bright Green Plastics on 1st Sep, will initially shadow Bright Green Plastic’s current team of six established engineers across the full range of requirements within the business, from breakdowns and preventative maintenance to fabrication, with Lewis focusing more on the electrical side of engineering, whilst Callum concentrates on mechanical aspects.
The ultimate objective is to develop Lewis and Callum to become highly qualified engineers, capable of leading a team within Bright Green Plastics’ business within the next five to six years.
Their new line manager, Bright Green Plastics’ Head of Facilities and Maintenance, Danny Cookson, who started his own career as an apprentice, comments on their appointment: “When I first met them, Lewis and Callum demonstrated maturity in their approach and I could see immediately that they would be a great fit for us, both technically and culturally. They both expressed a desire to study up to HNC level, which is exactly the type of attitude and drive we want to see at the firm”.
Steve Spencer, managing director at Bright green Plastics, believes the manufacturing and reprocessing sectors must invest more in young people: “With evolving technology continuing to drive growth in the field of engineering, young people must be encouraged to join and help build a lasting legacy for UK industry, whilst driving our economy in the long term.”
Bright Green Plastics has a history of successful apprenticeships, with line manager, Danny Cook, joining the business as an apprentice 20 years ago. Danny adds: “Engineering is an exciting, thriving industry, rife with innovation and new technology, and the perfect career for any young person who enjoys fixing things and possesses a natural curiosity to know how things work. Apprenticeships are a tried and tested route to establishing a long and varied career – without the thousands of pounds of university debt.”
“It’s an honour to pick-up the baton as line manager to our new apprentices, and I’m excited to see what the coming years bring as we invite more young men and women onto our site to become the next generation of British engineering talent.”
Apprenticeships at Bright Green Plastics were already part of the firm’s long-term business strategy. However, it welcomes the introduction of the Government’s Plan for Jobs scheme, where employers are being offered support to develop emerging talent in the UK, particularly in-light of the recent shortage in hands on apprentices and the requirement for more trainees in the UK’s engineering workforce.
Steve Spencer elaborates: “We need younger people in our business to develop them to become future managers. The addition of youthful energy, fresh eyes and new ideas can only add value to any organisation, and we are fully behind the government’s drive to up-the-ante on apprenticeships.”
This move is part of Bright Green Plastics long-term strategy to upgrade and grow the business and follows its recent £750,000 investment into the development of its new plastics sorting plant, which has been fully operational since July 2020.