One of Britain’s oldest apprentices, James O’Connor of Manchester, has been named top apprentice in the annual North West Region Training Awards. He is 40 years old and employed by building-services engineering company Ameon, which has supported him on the 2-year ventilation course and a work-based NVQ in commercial plumbing and heating. His award was as ventilation ductwork installer of the year and was presented at a black-tie event at Bolton’s Reebok Stadium.
For the last 10 years, he has worked on site as a ventilation and heating technician and, more recently, senior craftsman on site around the region for Ameon — including the Media City development at Salford Quays.
He comments, ‘I’m hoping that my award will dispel the myth that you can’t teach an old dog new tricks and also help me to gain another promotion at Ameon. My ultimate aim is to move into the company’s design department to design heating and ventilation systems for construction projects. There’s a strong training culture within the company, and everyone gets a chance to improve themselves, so I’m confident that I can get a chance to achieve my goals.’
His latest assignment is to operate as foreman on Ameon’s £1.9 million contract to install all mechanical services in Rochdale Sixth Form College’s new 5-storey teaching facility.’
Taken from Modern Building Services