The Wales National Roof Training Group (WNRTG) has held an open day at the SERS training facility in Caerphilly to launch its new NVQ Level 2 Specialist Apprentice Programme (SAP) in Roof Slating and Tiling.
Held on June 4, the event was the first of its kind in the area and it is hoped that it will attract local young roofing talent, and offer them a more convenient alternative to travelling to Birmingham or the South West to pursue roofing qualifications.
Lesley Hughes, group training officer at WNRTG, told RCI: “The WNRTG was set up in 2009 and has so far offered the likes of health and safety training, first aid, manual handling, working at height etc. but so far we haven’t had roofing specific training in Wales.”
Ms. Hughes explained that attempts had been made in the past to set up an apprenticeship scheme with a local college, but this came to nothing as no specific space could be allocated for rigs and roofing equipment. But after speaking to members of WNRTG, the decision was made to set up a SAP NVQ Level 2 Roof Slating & Tiling course in conjunction with Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).
Lesley continued: “These things take time, but after numerous meetings and discussions, we are now up and running. We have a fantastic facility thanks to Paul Jenkins of SERS. They had space for us to set up rigs plus great classroom facilities, and we’ve also had great support from the industry including the likes of Monier Redland, Klober and SIG who have all donated materials and tools.”
With all this in place, WNRTG is now focused on spreading the word and getting people through the door. Lesley added: “Our next task is to make sure roofing companies in the area are aware of this fantastic facility that is available on their doorstep, and make sure that they know they can look at putting apprentices through locally.
“So far we have the first intake of six lads starting on June 11, and then a second intake of another six in January 2016. Going forward we’d like to continue that and ultimately – subject to demand – increase the number of intakes per year.”
Lesley also explained that WNRTG are in talks with a number of associations including the Single Ply Roofing Association (SPRA), the Liquid Roofing and Waterproofing Association (LRWA) and the Lead Sheet Association (LSA) with a view to implementing up-skilling and apprenticeship courses in the future.
To contact the WNRTG and discuss training, email Lesley.email@example.com, or call 07817 641984