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Matthew engineers a bright future with us in National Apprenticeship Week

2 weeks ago Fri 7th Feb 2020

Meet Matthew Wallis, an award-winning young apprentice at our Starbeck garage, who’s on the road to success.

Matty, 20, is celebrating after being highly commended in the Engineer of the Year category in our annual Amazing Awards, which each year turns the spotlight on exceptional individuals among our 1,200-strong team across Yorkshire and Lancashire.

Matty’s impressive start in his job as engineering apprentice at Harrogate Depot has seen him develop at a rapid pace while earning the respect of experienced colleagues – and now we’re proud to reveal bold plans to encourage others to follow his lead by supporting a new generation of talent across the North.

We are expanding our apprenticeships programme for 2020, not only with further engineering recruits, but also by developing people in other areas including information technology, by offering an Advanced IT Professional Apprenticeship to modernise the way we manage our systems and technology. Later this year we plan to add business administration and customer service courses to further develop our skills base.

Meanwhile, six of our brightest talents will soon begin a management apprenticeship, designed to grow their skills – among them Harrogate bus driver David Umpleby and former Rosso driver Lee Wardle, who are currently progressing well on their road to a career in service delivery management through our unique ‘Step Up’ people development programme.

Joining them on this year’s management apprenticeship programme will be:

  • Allan Gilmour, duty manager with The Harrogate Bus Company
  • Phil Jolly, Keighley Bus Station Manager with The Keighley Bus Company
  • Adam Emmott, Supervisor at York and Malton
  • Dale French, Training Officer with The Harrogate Bus Company

The expansion of our apprenticeship programme comes as UK employers celebrate National Apprenticeship Week, with hundreds of events celebrating diversity in apprenticeships and the benefits they bring.

Our CEO Alex Hornby said;

We’re immensely proud of Matthew, David and Lee as they advance in their careers with us. Matthew has come on in leaps and bounds in the relatively short time he’s been part of our Harrogate engineering team, while David and Lee’s passion for delivering the highest quality service for our customers is clear for all to see.

We’re keen to support more of our people to achieve their potential with us, and so this year we’ll be running five apprenticeship programmes. Each will focus on critical areas for the future of our business, including engineering, team management, information technology, human resources and customer service.

As National Apprenticeship Week turns the national spotlight onto the benefits of apprenticeships, now is the time for us to step up our training and support to make sure we retain and develop the very best people in our competitive industry.


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