In response to a comment on a previous post, Paul mentioned that we have been looking at apprenticeships and skills succession. Some readers may have already seen the advert for the Heritage Restoration Apprentice, more details of which at this link: –
The Heritage Restoration Apprentice will work in the RHEC, working on and learning their skills on a variety of projects some of which will include the transport exhibits.
We have just advertised, today, for a Mechanical Engineering Apprentice. We have been working with a local college to work out which courses they provide that best fit with our operations and needs. The result is a 4 year apprenticeship which has the emphasis firmly on mechanical engineering, with a particular focus on the manufacture and repair of components. This is likely to focus on the tramcar fleet, the apprentice will also be trained in the operating grades to gain an understanding of the fleet as an operating exhibit. More details can be found at the link here:-
Both apprenticeships are excellent opportunities for people wishing to learn the skills necessary to maintain and repair our working exhibits. As you would expect, they are hands on roles. Should you wish to apply then details of how to do this can be found at the links provided.
Here are some photos of some of the types of work the apprentices might expect to learn and carry out in the future.
Whilst on the subject of skills retention, on Friday we had 2 new tram drivers externally assessed, Kayleigh and Kevin.
Below: Kevin and Kayleigh with 196 in service on Friday, after qualifying as drivers that morning.
The need to train new drivers is ever present as people move to new jobs or take retirement; we also need to up our numbers slightly to keep up with the increased visitor numbers. Kayleigh is now our youngest driver at 21, having worked at Beamish for 3 years. Kayleigh and Kevin have both been trained by Stuart Jennings, out tramway supervisor. The importance of passing on the sort of knowledge Stuart has cannot be under estimated, these apprenticeships will replicate the passing on of skills suitable for the maintenance and overhaul of our exhibits.
Keeper of Transport