Anthony Jeff has joined global tissue manufacturer Essity as its technical training leader to deliver the company’s award-winning apprenticeship programme at its Tynedale plant.

Anthony joins Essity from Gateshead College where he was curriculum lead for their apprenticeship programmes for eight years. He specialised in mechanical engineering which included machining, hand fitting and maintenance techniques.

He brings more than 15 years’ experience in the engineering education sector and was also responsible for the successful remodel of the mechanical engineering department at Huntingdon Regional College in Cambridgeshire after it was mothballed in the 1990s.

Explaining why he was drawn to Essity, Anthony said: “I am passionate about linking training and education with today’s business and industry needs. Essity’s approach to learning and development mirrors my own. Its apprenticeship programme is pioneering, taking mechanical and technical engineering methodology and combining it with a practical and inspiring approach to learning.

“We know there’s a skills shortage in the North East manufacturing sector. The best way of tackling the gap is to train young people. I am looking forward to building on the mill’s achievements by identifying new training and development pathways and ensuring apprentices have the support and opportunity to achieve a successful and rewarding career.”

Essity currently has 35 apprentices training at Prudhoe Mill with a further 15 new starters joining in September. It runs intermediate and advanced apprenticeships in engineering manufacture and operations.

One is a two-year process-based apprenticeship. The second is its three-year Advanced Manufacturing Engineering programme. The company received a Princess Royal Training Award for its apprenticeship scheme in 2019 after successfully training more than 150 youngsters since it launched in 2004.

Mill manager Tony Richards, adds: “I am delighted to welcome Anthony to the team. Our apprentice scheme brings huge value to the business and he will be instrumental in developing and delivering our training strategy for the future.

“Anthony brings a wealth of experience with him which will be invaluable internally as well as externally with our training partners. He understands our values and I believe he will build on the success we have achieved bringing fresh ideas and enormous experience.”

Essity produces popular toilet tissue brands Velvet and Cushelle at Prudhoe Mill and is the second largest manufacturer in Northumberland.