A young Cramlington man is kicking off his career after becoming regional employer Banks Mining’s latest Northumberland apprentice.
Twenty-two year-old Lewis Coyle was chosen from a considerable number of applicants for the plant mechanic apprenticeship at its Shotton surface coal mine near Cramlington, which will see him undertake a comprehensive three year apprenticeship programme combining on the job practical training with theoretical classroom-based learning at Northumberland College.
Lewis will be working directly with highly-experienced Banks employees to learn workplace skills that will be useful to him through his entire working life, as well as alongside the six other apprentices that are currently part-way through their training period with the County Durham-headquartered firm.
Run in conjunction with Northumberland College, Banks Mining’s apprenticeship recruitment programme involved a number of different stages, with the applications received initially being reviewed and whittled down to the final 12.
A candidate day was then held, which included senior Banks Mining personnel giving a company overview to the potential recruits and detailing the work they would be undertaking should they be successful.
Three candidates were then chosen to attend a final assessment day at the Shotton site, which included computer-based assessments, practical tests and individual interviews.
Last year, Banks Mining took on two new apprentices at its Thrislington depot in County Durham, and the firm is expecting to create further apprenticeship positions in 2018.
Keith Tarn, group human resources manager at The Banks Group, says: “Providing this sort of opportunity for talented young people clearly benefits both employers and their new employees, and we’ve seen at first hand the positive impact that apprentices can bring to businesses like ours.
“We had some very strong candidates for this latest apprenticeship position, with Lewis presenting an impressive combination of personal and practical qualities which made him the stand-out candidate for the role.
“We have a highly-experienced team at Shotton who are providing hands-on support and advice for Lewis and our other apprentices, which, alongside their classroom-based learning at Northumberland College, is helping them develop that will serve them well throughout their entire working lives.“