With over 1,000 students signing up for the inaugural Bradford Manufacturing Week, manufacturers are being encouraged to open their doors and offer them a true taste of UK industry.
Fifty-five manufacturers are already set to host more than 1,000 young people aged 14-18 during the first Bradford Manufacturing Week in October (8-12) – with some schools expressing an interest in sending all pupils out into the manufacturing workplace.
As the Friday 24 August closing date approaches for businesses to sign up, Nick Garthwaite – the founder of Bradford Manufacturing Week – is calling for even more manufacturers to open their doors and accommodate an ‘unprecedented’ number of young people wanting to experience the industry.
Garthwaite, who is managing director of international chemicals and detergents manufacturer Christeyns, and president of Bradford Chamber, commented: “This level of interest means only one thing – we need even more manufacturers to open their doors and we need to know what they can offer us – and fast.”
He continued: “We recently held a CPD day for teachers to take their advice on a toolkit we have created to help manufacturers navigate their way through the process of hosting pupils on-site and we have responded directly to their requests for even more work experience opportunities to be created.
“When the schools return in September we want the largest possible portfolio of manufacturer opportunities to present to them – whether it’s tours, talks or work placements and experiences. We need manufacturers to get in touch now and help us help them take advantage of this incredible appetite for manufacturing information and experiences.”
The new toolkit, which is now available to download offers a guide to Bradford Manufacturing Week, a sample risk assessment, insurance cover requirements and advice on hosting a tour or site visit.
Bradford Manufacturing Week is the first initiative of its kind in the district and brings a week of events, tours, work placements, company visits and seminars in a bid to boost apprenticeship numbers by creating more inspired, informed and ‘work ready’ applicants into the sector.
Joanne Sykes, assistant head teacher at Parkside School in Bradford, said: “We plan to send our 180 Year Nine pupils on work experience days throughout the week and expect that interest in manufacturing as a career will soar after the incredible insight created through Bradford Manufacturing Week.”