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  • Writer's picturePaul Andrews

Castleford Apprentices Take On SkillsWeld 2023 Qualifiers

Fabrication and Welding apprentices at Castleford College showed off their vast welding skills, as they took part in the SkillsWeld 2023 qualifiers. This saw apprentices complete four separate tests covering the three main types of welding processes - gas tungsten arc welding, stick welding and metal insert gas welding.

Castleford College apprentices Benjamin Mace, Dale Robinson, Korey Wigglesworth, Paisley Mitchell, Oscar Emery and Zack Newall represented the North East, with student Kalum Smart representing Yorkshire and Humberside.

Once the competition was completed, Stephen Haymes, from Engineering Skills Competitions, Clive Slocombe, from Code A Weld and Chris Porter, from Air Products, presented the apprentices with their certificates.

Kalum Smart took home the first prize, with Korey Wigglesworth placing second and Dale Robinson third. The winners all received a bag of supplies to help them with their studies by Air Products and Code A Weld, who are both sponsors of the SkillsWeld 2023 competition.

Oscar Emery, Level 3 Fabrication and Welding Apprentice with Yorkshire and Laser Fabrication, said: “Taking part in the SkillsWeld qualifiers really challenged my knowledge and skillset within welding and the different types of it. It was great to be able to apply the knowledge I’m learning day-to-day within my Apprenticeship to the tests. I always knew that I wanted to do an Apprenticeship once I’d finished school, as I wanted to earn whilst I learnt and be able to learn in a hands-on, practical environment.”

Lucas Moon, who is also a Fabrication and Welding Apprentice with Yorkshire and Laser Fabrication, placed in the top four for Welding at the WorldSkills UK 2022 competition.

Following his performance, Lucas has been selected to train on the squad for Great Britain’s Welding team and will compete in the European World Skills finals in Poland, in September 2023. He will then go on to the 47th WorldSkills competition in Lyon in France, in September 2024.

Gary Wright, Fabrication and Welding Lecturer at Castleford College, said: “Lucas is a shining example of the success of the SkillsWeld competition, with him now placing in the top three Welders in the UK for under 25-year-olds. The competition is a fantastic way for our apprentices to further test and develop their welding skills and is a great addition to their CV. Myself and fellow tutors within the Engineering department are incredibly proud of them for taking part in the qualifiers and hope that we will have a number of apprentices at the national finals.”

Held by WorldSkills and Engineering Skills Competitions, SkillsWeld is aimed at trainee and apprentice welders working and/or training in the welding industry at Level 2-3 or a higher level.

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