Awards ceremonies honour Sheffield Forgemasters’ talent pool

Sheffield Forgemasters' award winning apprentices and apprenticeship scheme continue to earn plaudits from across the region.

The manufacturing giant's apprenticeship scheme took top honours at Yorkshire Business Masters awards while 17-year-old apprentice Bradley McDonald won Outstanding Achievement by a Technical Apprentice from the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) Training Centre.

Bradley, who is an apprentice metallurgist and forge estimator, is already making a name for himself in the industry after finishing runner up in the prestigious national IOM Technician of the Year awards last November.

He received his award from the AMRC at the finals at the Firth Hall in Sheffield and was praised by judges on his hunger to learn, academic achievements and attention to detail.

Forgemasters’ chief executive Graham Honeyman said: "Bradley has exceeded all expectations during the past 15 months and his transformation from school leaver to a productive team member in a high profile, and high pressure, working environment has been exemplary. The maturity he shows is far and beyond a 17 year old. His effort and commitment to his apprenticeship cannot be questioned. He is already producing high quality work with only a small amount of supervision." award was presented to Forgemasters for the most effective training programme or scheme, and was a new category for the established Business Masters event.

Graham added: “Young engineers represent the future of the manufacturing industry in the region – a future which is enhanced as our region's reputation for excellence spreads.

"We are consistently looking at specialist knowledge and diversification marrying opportunities and high level engineering and apprentices contribute to the continued evolution of the company."

Forgemasters is currently training 38 apprentices from a total of 760 employees for roles in all departments across the company. In 2014, 600 applicants applied for 15 places.

The company has recruited a total of 103 apprentices in the last seven years with a retention rate of 92 per cent. Apprenticeships have helped lower the average age of employees at Sheffield Forgemasters from 50 to 42 whilst transferring essential skills and providing inspiring role models.