Cross­rail ap­pren­tices on track

Trans­port min­is­ter praises com­pany hir­ing en­thu­si­as­tic young peo­ple

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

TRANS­PORT min­is­ter Lord Tariq Ah­mad has vis­ited young ap­pren­tices at a Hayes fac­tory in­volved in the Cross­rail pro­ject.

The Tory peer, 47, was at Lee War­ren Fab­ri­ca­tion and De­sign Ltd on Fri­day, July 17, a fam­ily-run small and medium en­ter­prise (SME) which has a con­tract to de­sign, man­u­fac­ture and in­stall plat­form screens at the Bond Street Cross­rail sta­tion.

The fac­tory is work­ing around the clock to ful­fil its role in phase two of the Cross­rail pro­ject by the end of this year.

Lord Ah­mad toured the work­shop floor and viewed a full size mock-up of the Bond Street plat­form edge screen, be­fore meet­ing some of the com­pany’s cur­rent and for­mer ap­pren­tices.

Lord Ah­mad. a lead­ing busi­ness­man and for­mer Wim­ble­don coun­cil­lor, said: “I met three dif­fer­ent ap­pren­tices with dif­fer­ent back­grounds. I think the ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­nity here is how we’re tak­ing young peo­ple who might not have thought about a par­tic­u­lar role within the scope of man­u­fac­tur­ing or en­gi­neer­ing and that we’re ac­tu­ally re­viv­ing that through projects such as Cross­rail.”

The com­pany’s con­tract with Cross­rail has sup­ported more than 50 jobs and seven ap­pren­tice­ships for lo­cal work­ers and young peo­ple.

Speak­ing of the Lee War­ren fac­tory, Lord Ah­mad added: “I think they have the kind of ethos we need for more com­pa­nies in­volved in these kind of projects.

“Tak­ing ap­pren­tices on shouldn’t be a tick-box ex­er­cise to ful­fil some gov­ern­ment cri­te­ria, it’s about tak­ing peo­ple on who are en­thused, ea­ger to learn, to en­sure they get the train­ing both on the job and in the class­room so they can ac­tu­ally skill them­selves up to the ben­e­fit of the com­pany and ul­ti­mately for the ben­e­fit of the coun­try as well.”

Lee War­ren has al­most 60 em­ploy­ees work­ing on the con­struc­tion, in­clud­ing the in­stal­la­tion team.

Fol­low­ing the com­ple­tion of tun­nelling in June, Cross­rail has now moved into the next phase in­clud­ing the fit-out of sta­tions, tun­nels and plat­forms to make the line op­er­a­tional.

Alex Pol­lock, pro­duc­tion di­rec­tor of Lee War­ren, said: “We built the mockup six weeks ago and will be en­ter­ing full pro­duc­tion by the mid­dle of next week and will con­tinue right through to Novem­ber, work­ing 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

One of the ap­pren­tices, Ryan Levin, came through the Cross­rail scheme and has been at the Lee War­ren fac­tory for about a year.

He said: “The scheme gave me great op­por­tu­ni­ties to learn, grow and de­velop while earn­ing some money at the same time. I came with very lit­tle skills and over the year I’ve been de­vel­op­ing a great stan­dard of work.

“I hope to keep de­vel­op­ing my­self and go on the the next Level 3 col­lege course and work my way up from there. It’s fan­tas­tic and I know it’s great to be in­volved in such a great com­pany.”

Cross­rail’s full ser­vices will be­gin in 2019. It will in­crease the ca­pac­ity of the cap­i­tal’s trans­port net­work, with 200 mil­lion pas­sen­gers ex­pected to use the ser­vice ev­ery year.

n EA­GER: Lord Ah­mad with ap­pren­tice Nile Ash­lin

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.