Well at Webs Training Ltd they don’t sit around for long. During Apprenticeship Week Webs have arranged for students from schools across the county to visit furniture manufacturing employers for a tour of their premises where they will see the career opportunities the industry has to offer.
Long Eaton alone has over 50 companies involved in furniture manufacturing or and allied processes. The industry employs over 2,700 people selling £250 million worth of furniture per year. Long Eaton is recognized as the ‘UK Centre of Quality Upholstery Manufacture’, so career prospects in the industry are excellent, but sadly amongst young people little is known about those prospects.
To remedy this for Apprenticeship Week Webs staff have arranged employer tours with Acclaim Upholstery, Duresta, Parker Knoll, Sherwood of Nottingham and Welbeck House. Some of these firms you will have heard off, others you may not, but they each produce high quality products that are sold at ‘high end’ retailers in the UK and all over the world.
In the 1960’s four Long Eaton companies founded a training centre in Beeston, Webs Training Ltd. Webs is still operating today, in a state of the art building providing City & Guilds qualifications in cabinet making, wood machining, cutting, sewing, upholstery and polishing. Also a range of business qualifications is offered as a ’one stop shop’ for a range of employers. Currently there are just under 200 apprentices supported by Webs and their employers.
Lorraine Jameson Head of Business & Quality at Webs is proud to say that learners start and stay in the industry ‘A lot of our learners go on to run their own businesses and it is brilliant that they come back to us to recruit apprentices, so we are obviously doing something right!’ All but one of Webs Training Officers have served their apprenticeship with them and after having worked in the industry for a number of years have come back to train future apprentices, between them they have a wealth of knowledge and expertise to share.*
So that comfy chair or cozy sofa you are sitting on could have been made by one of the companies and former apprentices that Webs have worked with! For more information give us a call or visit our website .
From left to right -Webs apprentices: Ian Hitchcock (Duresta), Jake Jones (Andrew Paul Furniture) Dylan Michael (Wades) Shaun Wadsworth, Upholstery Trainer, James Woolley Head of Programme Management, Lorraine Jameson, Head of Business & Quality, Apprentices Dean Saunt (Parker Knoll, Alfreton) Ryan Slater (Wades)
*Please see the seven page article on furniture manufacturing in Long Eaton in the March edition of Derbyshire Life. Picture supplied by Ashley Franklin used in the Derbyshire Life article.