Woodsmith Project apprenticeship programme open for applications

09 February 2021

Anglo American, the owner of the Woodsmith Project on the North Yorkshire coast, has kicked off National Apprenticeship week by announcing the launch of its 2021 apprenticeship programme.


The company is looking to recruit 10 engineering apprentices to add to the 14 already on its team, part of a pledge to hire 50 apprentices in the coming years for its state of the art mine and transport infrastructure currently under construction near Whitby and on Teesside.


The four-year apprenticeship to train Advanced Engineering Technicians will be run in partnership with TTE, part of Middlesbrough College.  It will focus on developing a sound knowledge of the electrical, mechanical and instrumentation engineering skills needed to maintain the mining equipment and infrastructure when the mine enters production later in the decade.


“We’re delighted to be announcing this year’s programme and delivering on our commitments to provide opportunities for young people in the area,” said Gareth Williams, the Operational Readiness Director for the Woodsmith Project. “The jobs that these apprenticeships will lead to will be essential to the successful day to day running of our world class mine.  So if you’re a bright and ambitious team player with a strong work ethic, and good communication and problem-solving skills, we want to hear from you.”


The announcement was made during National Apprenticeship Week, an annual government campaign which seeks to showcase the impact apprenticeships can have on communities, local businesses and regional economies.


David Kerfoot, Chair of the York and North Yorkshire LEP commented “Now more than ever, it’s essential that businesses work to create good jobs and careers for our young people, by providing them the opportunity to gain skills. Encouraging more apprenticeships is an excellent way to do that and I can think of no better example than Anglo American’s apprenticeship programme.  The highly skilled jobs that these apprenticeships will lead to are exactly the sort of jobs we need more of in this region, and I look forward to the creation of many more jobs with the Woodsmith Project for many generations to come.”


The Woodsmith Project currently employs approximately 1200 people at sites in Scarborough, Whitby and on Teesside, with around 200 more expected to be added in the coming months.  The project involves the sinking of two mineshafts into the polyhalite ore over a mile beneath the surface near Whitby, and the construction of a 23 mile long tunnel to a new processing and shipping facility on Teesside.  When the mine is complete, extracted polyhalite ore will be hoisted up the mineshaft and transported underground on a conveyor belt, avoiding any impact on the countryside above.  From there, it will be shipped around the world and sold to farmers as a natural low carbon fertiliser, certified for organic use.


Successful applicants will split their time between a specially provided classroom at the Woodsmith Mine, the Middlesbrough College workshop facility and remote learning for the first two years, before continuing the remaining two years in work-based training with Anglo American in preparation for long-term engineering technician roles in installation and maintenance.


Zoe Lewis, Principal and Chief Executive of TTE, part of the Middlesbrough College Group, said: “We are proud to partner with Anglo American to support the development of its apprenticeship programme for its polyhalite mine.  The Woodsmith Project and its associated developments will form an essential part of the long-term economic prosperity of the region and create a skilled local workforce, which we are pleased to play a part in developing.”


Applicants should apply via the Anglo American UK website by 31 March.  The company will host a webinar on Thursday 18 February at 5pm for those who want to find out more information and submit questions.  Visit http://uk.angloamerican.com/apprenticeships for further information.


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