All from Press Centre


Kurt Rodgers and Steve Clewlow, both apprentice welders at Alstom based in Stafford, have
made it to the final of the national SkillWeld competition, which aims to find Britain’s most talented trainee welder. 

Ten finalists have each successfully emerged from one of the competition’s regional heats and will be taking part in a live competition at this year’s Skills Show at the NEC in Birmingham between 14th and 16th November. The finalists will also be eligible for selection for the World UK Skills team and may have the opportunity to compete internationally at WorldSkills 2015 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Jim Mcilwrath, Welding Engineering Manager said: “We’ve had some great success in recent years with another of our apprentices winning gold at the competition last year. We’re extremely optimistic that Kurt and Steve’s dedication towards training and skills will put them in a good position during the competition.”

Kurt, from Doncaster, and Steve, from Birkenhead, are both 19-years-old and attend Newcastle-under-Lyme College one day a week.

There were 112 entrants in this year’s competition, an increase from 77 last year. The competition is open to trainee welders who are in full time education and training at UK-based companies and are studying for welding qualifications at colleges around the country.

Alstom opened its world-class welding facility in Stafford in response to increasing demand for welding services and skills. The facility supports more than 350 of Alstom’s UK based welding apprentices per year by providing a technical training facility and supporting research and development activities.