Worcestershire carpenter nails Stepnell’s Apprentice of the Year title

Talented carpenter Daniel Little, from Bewdley, near Kidderminster, has been named Apprentice of the Year by construction firm Stepnell.

The 33-year-old was stunned to be chosen from apprentices working for Stepnell regional offices across central and southern England for the award, which he received in a surprise presentation by the company’s joint managing director Tom Wakeford. As well as the trophy, Daniel was presented with £100 in Amazon vouchers and a bottle of champagne. Daniel was chosen as Stepnell’s group Apprentice of the Year having been picked by the company’s West Midlands team as the regional winner.

“It was quite a shock to be given the award, it hasn’t quite sunk in!” says Daniel, who jumped at the chance to train as an apprentice having originally joined the firm’s West Midlands business – based in Kidderminster –  as a groundworker more than a decade ago.

“I really enjoy what I do, especially when I’ve finished a job and see the end result, it gives me a lot of satisfaction. Having the opportunity to join Stepnell’s apprentice training programme has enabled me to establish my skills and acquire my trade qualifications while earning a wage. My goal is to master every aspect of carpentry to a high standard. My previous construction experience and the fact that I’m a bit older helps me see the bigger picture. I like the variety of the job and working for a major construction firm means I’ve had the chance to develop my skills on a bigger range of projects.”

Daniel has already gained his NVQ Level 2 qualifications with the company’s support and is now studying for his advanced Level 3 qualification. He undertakes his college-based studies on day-release at Heart of Worcestershire College’s Redditch campus, and develops his trade skills on site with Stepnell.

“Many congratulations to Daniel on this well-deserved award,” says John Rawlinson, regional director for Stepnell, which is a leading provider of education facilities, hospitals, care homes and industrial and commercial buildings. “His passion for his work and for learning new skills has impressed us all and we’re delighted to see him receiving the Apprentice of the Year award.

“Giving motivated and talented employees such as Daniel the chance to advance their careers is a key aspect of our investment in our workforce.  That commitment to providing training and apprenticeship opportunities has enabled us to create an exceptionally talented team of tradespeople capable of delivering the first-rate buildings which our clients expect. It also allows us to combat the shortage of trades skills faced by the industry as a whole and help communities prosper by providing job and training opportunities for local people.”

Daniel’s Apprentice of the Year title follows on from his success earlier this year when his high-quality workmanship saw him win a competition run by builders merchant Travis Perkins for students at Heart of Worcestershire College. Daniel also took second place in his category in the regional heats of SkillBuild – the UK’s biggest skills competition for apprentices – in both 2016 and 2017.



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