Barrow’s top apprentice Daniel Thompson was in the running for a long-term future in the yard.

Welder Daniel, 21, won the place for the best overall craftsman in the annual BAE apprentice awards, staged at the Lisdoonie Hotel in 2007.

He was proud to be building submarines and thought the yard would soon win more work.

After he received a crystal trophy and a cheque for £150, and the time served welder of Monksvale Grove, Barrow, he said “It’s a brilliant job.”

“It’s rewarding and you feel you are actually building something for the defence of your country. It’s not like doing a regular job, you’re building nuclear submarine and they are very impressive. I think the yard definitely has a good future.

“It we got the first Astute submarine out on time this June will get four more and there is work on sections of the aircraft carriers, so there will be plenty of work in the yard in future.”

David Kinley, 20, of Urswick, won the fabrication and welding apprentice of the year. Getting a trophy and £50 and is now training to be a team leader.

Mr Kinley said: “I am proud of the award.

“I think it’s a good apprenticeship scheme which is run well.

“The shipyard has a good future.”

His brother Thomas Kinley won the ESAB Award for Welding Excellence Trophy and a welding helmet.

Andrew Leech, 21, of Andreas Avenue, Walney, was the BAE Land systems apprentice of the year.

The time served machinist said: “I am very happy with the award.

“It was a great surprise to win it.”

He worked on the titanium castings for the M777 howitzer which was exported to the US.

At the time there were 200 shipyard apprentices with a record intake of 150 more due the following year.

BAE is one of the largest contributors to the Barrow economy and has seen generations of families take on a role at the company.

It is also one of its major employers, and has seen intake grow year on year.