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The Corporation

Posted: 11/04/14

Students achieve best-ever results at construction challenge

West Nottinghamshire College has cemented its best-ever results in the UK’s biggest construction skills competition.

  • Anna Lodge secured first place in the painting and decorating senior competition
  • Frankie Hawson secured second place in the painting and decorating senior competition
  • Jessica Buckley secured second place in the painting and decorating new entrant competition
  • Joshua Flanaghan secured first place in the plastering new entrant competition
  • Liam Jones secured second place in the brickwork new entrant competition
  • Samuel Bispham secured second place in the carpentry senior competition
  • Stefan Hubble secured first place in the painting and decorating new entrant competition
  • Stuart Brown secured third place in the plastering senior competition
  • The eight West Nottinghamshire College entrants proud of their achievements

On Thursday (10 April) the college hosted the East Midlands regional heats of SkillBuild 2014.

Aimed at finding Britain’s best trainee tradesperson it saw 102 students from 20 colleges compete in a wide range of craft-based challenges including bricklaying, carpentry, joinery, plastering, painting and decorating.

Eight of the 14 students entered by the college achieved top three positions in their respective categories – double last year’s total – with three taking the top spot.

• Plastering, new entrant category – 1st place - Joshua Flanagan
• Painting and decorating, new entrant category – 1st place - Stefan Hubble
• Painting and decorating, senior category – 1st place - Anna Lodge
• Painting and decorating, new entrant category - 2nd place - Jessica Buckley
• Painting and decorating, senior category - 2nd place - Francis Hawson
• Carpentry, senior category – 2nd place - Sam Bispham
• Brickwork, new entrant category – 2nd place  - Liam Jones
• Plastering, senior category – 3rd place - Stuart Brown

Anna, 32, from Lenton, won 1st place in the senior painting and decorating competition. Anna works for Harrington’s Decorators with her business partner and former student Rebecca Harrington.  She said: “It was a really tense competition today. I took part last year but didn’t get placed but I felt much more confident this year.  I secured the new entrant first place at SkillBuild 2012.  I’m on cloud nine to have won first place again.”

The regional heats involve students working on test plans which take a day to complete, with the highest scorers from the senior categories put forward to compete in the national final.

Head of construction and building services Julian Walden said: “We’re absolutely delighted with the results from all colleges – and especially our own hard-working students at West Notts College.

“Displaying this kind of success in SkillBuild shows we’re attracting talented students who aspire to be the very best they can be in their chosen craft.  This means they will stand out from the crowd and ultimately become more employable.”

Organised by the CITB (Construction Industry Training Board), SkillBuild has been running for more than 20 years as a way of recognising the importance of trainees and their skills.

Success at the SkillBuild regional heats will give entrants the opportunity to challenge for a place on the WorldSkills UK team and progress to compete at the 2015 WorldSkills competition in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.

Caption for group image: back (l-r) Joshua Flanaghan, Liam Jones, Stuart Brown, Samuel Bispham, front (l-r) Stefan Hubble, Jessica Buckley, Anna Lodge, Francis Hawson