It’s National Apprenticeship Week 2024 (NAW24)!  


This is the 17th national weeklong celebration which brings together businesses and apprentices to shine a light on the positive impact that apprenticeships bring to individuals, businesses and the wider economy. 


This year, the theme of NAW is #SkillsForLife, helping businesses to consider how apprenticeships can help individuals to develop the skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career, and employers to develop a workforce with future ready skills. 


Lionweld Kennedy have welcomed many apprentices into various areas of our business, from the drawing office and draughtsmen to maintenance and welders. Currently, apprentices account for 15% of our entire workforce. Introducing apprentices into our business, providing them with the tools and support needed with training and a recognised qualification is why Lionweld Kennedy are delighted to participate in National Apprenticeship Week. 


To learn more about our apprenticeships and the value they are getting from their hands-on experience, working in their departments with their teams, we asked a few individuals on their apprenticeship journey and the skills they have acquired for their future. 


First up, we are speaking to Alex Gale, who is one of our first-year apprentices who joined us over 6 months ago. Alex is progressing on his Level 2 ‘General Welding’ apprenticeship, working on the production line with his colleagues and other apprentices. When asked about what he enjoys most about his apprenticeship at Lionweld, Alex said ‘Meeting new people in the factory and getting to know them. I enjoy the jobs I get to work on and having a part in the production’.  


Alex decided to pursue an apprenticeship as he saw it as the better option for him, rather than college as he gets to be hands-on and earning which is a significant benefit of an apprenticeship. We asked Alex what skills he has learnt in the 6 months that will help him with his future career goals, Alex identified he will be ‘more comfortable and confident in team and individual situations’ and has gained valuable experience and skills in welding which provide him with a solid foundation to build upon in the manufacturing industry.  



Next, we spoke to another of our first-year apprentices who has been with Lionweld for 4 months now. Neve Bytheway is completing her Level 2 NVQ in Welding and Fabrication and enjoys learning new skills every day. With apprenticeships, the individuals can get involved in the everyday processes and learn on the job which allows many individuals to learn quicker than other educational routes.  


We asked Neve about her reasons for pursuing an apprenticeship and Neve told us that she wanted to ‘progress and have experience in the workplace’. Neve also told us about how the skills she has learnt at Lionweld will help her have a ‘head start in moving up to a higher role as you will already have the technical knowledge of the role’.  



Lastly, we spoke to another first-year apprentice who is also progressing through his welding apprenticeship. Matthew Stonehouse has also been with Lionweld Kennedy for 6 months now, he ‘enjoys talking to the other employees as it helps me to become a more confident person. I also enjoy the experience of being on the shop floor and being hands on with the work’.  


We spoke to Matthew about why he chose an apprenticeship, for Matthew it was the ‘most logical idea rather than another further education options such as university’. Matthew also identified that the apprenticeship would provide him with the qualifications to secure a job in manufacturing in the industry.  


It’s clear to see that apprenticeships provide the vital training and experiences which can shape future careers through gaining skills for life. It’s important for businesses like Lionweld, a proud UK manufacturer, to recognise the value in a workforce that includes apprentices, training future generations through providing them with skills for life.  


We also take a closer look at one of our engineering apprentices, Lloyd Hanson, who is completing his Level 6 apprenticeship, after previously completing his Level 3 apprenticeship with Lionweld Kennedy. Click here to read more.  


To find out more about an apprentice career with Lionweld Kennedy, contact careers@lk-uk,com. 


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