A celebration event will recognise the contribution apprentices make to local authority services across Cumbria.

Apprentices from Cumberland and Westmorland and Furness Councils and Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service are being invited to the National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) event to thank them for their work and the positive impact they make to communities.
The event at Penrith Rugby Club on Friday, February 9 will be the culmination of the week, an annual opportunity for the education and skills sector and employers to celebrate the achievements of apprentices.
The theme for NAW 2024, which runs from February 5-11, is ‘Skills For Life’ and there will be a different focus each day from apprenticeships for all to a focus on individual stories.
Both Cumberland and Westmorland and Furness Councils expect to recruit dozens of new apprentices into roles this year, including civil engineering, highways engineering, business administration, project management, accountancy and care services. Recruitment for specific roles will begin in March.
Many successful applicants go on to secure permanent roles and the opportunity to make a long-term career within local government. The Apprenticeships Team will be at school and college events throughout the week as well as hosting a ‘More than you think’ online information session on Thursday, February 8 at 5pm.
The online event will provide help and advice to those starting a new career and considering the apprenticeship route. The event is aimed at young people, parents and carers who are interested in finding out more about the options available. More details can be found online at Cumbriaapprenticeships.org.uk
Those with an interest are also advised to follow the employers’ social media channels throughout the week for more information and case studies of successful applicants. The week will close with the lunchtime celebration event, which will be attended by senior figures from all three employers.
Councillor Sue Sanderson, Westmorland and Furness Council’s cabinet member for children’s services, education and skills, said: “During National Apprenticeship Week we really want to celebrate what our apprentices do and show others the fantastic opportunities that will be available this year to follow in their footsteps.
“Holding an event to highlight the contribution apprentices make to our communities will show exactly what can be achieved and further boost the profile of our successful apprenticeship programme. Apprenticeships are a fantastic opportunity for people to earn while they learn and many of our apprentices go on to secure permanent employment and further training.”
Councillor Elaine Lynch, Cumberland Council executive member for lifelong learning and development, said: “We’ll be honouring our dedicated apprentices at the celebratory event on February 9. As we reflect on the theme ‘Skills For Life’ we recognise the invaluable contributions these apprentices make to our communities. The week-long celebrations will showcase diverse apprenticeship opportunities, from civil engineering to care services, with an emphasis on individual success stories.”
Kristine Ward, head of people and talent at Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service has a number of colleagues who have successfully completed apprenticeships at all levels of the organisation, and we are pleased that our most recent newly-qualified apprentices will have their achievements celebrated. Apprenticeships bring tremendous value for an organisation, and for individuals in their personal and professional development.”
Former civil engineering apprentice Jack Gosling is one of those who has gone on to secure a full-time role with the council.
He said: “I decided to choose an apprenticeship purely for the fact I could earn whilst I learned.
“Having an income whilst learning motivated me more to excel in my work. I have now secured a full-time role within the Network Management Team as a technician.
“I would fully recommend taking an apprenticeship with the council due to the way you are treated, respected and feel you are really part of a team. Whenever I was in a position where I was unsure or less confident, there was always someone to help.”
For more information visit Cumbriaapprenticeships.org.uk or follow @cumbriacouncilapprenticeships on Instagram and the three authorities on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and X.