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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Apprentices’ hard work filmed for TV documentary

GROUP of young apprentices have built their way into the limelight as part of a major housing development scheme.

The team, made up of young Cumbrian hopefuls, will be the stars of a new TV series set to be broadcast in March.

Each of the 22 rookies had been taken on as an apprentice by either Cumbrian house builder Story Homes or one of their sub-contractors.

They were given the task of building and finishing a four-bedroom detached house in Kells, Whitehaven.

The recruits, all aged between 17 and 27, were from across West Cumbria, Carlisle and Penrith.

They built the £225,000 house on budget, with no mistakes and in only 12 months. It started in January 2011 and was completed ahead of schedule in October.

Most were recruited in June 2010 at a jobs fair in the town and many had been unemployed or had just left school.

From laying every brick to decorating, the apprentice joiners, tilers and bricklayers completed the challenge under the supervision of qualified staff.

Since work on the house began, every stage of construction has been filmed for the TV series, from digging the foundations to the plumbing, electrics and interiors.

Bosses from the development firm were so impressed with the build that the house is to be used as a show home at the award-winning Magellan Park estate.

The home was officially opened by Elaine Woodburn, leader of Copeland council. Story Homes’ chief executive Fred Story was also there.

Dexter Routledge, the project manager for Story Homes, said: “This has been an outstanding undertaking and a big learning curve for the apprentices.

“They can be enormously proud of themselves for the quality of their work.

“They have worked extremely hard to achieve something and we are standing in the result.”

On completion of the scheme, the apprentices each received an Excellence Award from the warranty providers, the Local Authority Building Control.

The project will be featured in three one-hour fly-on-the-wall documentaries to be broadcast on ITV4. The first one wil be screened at 9pm on Monday, March 19.

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