Looking to the future with new apprentices

Apprentices (l-r) Paul Smillie, Aaron Smith, Lewis Gibson and Sean Dearie meet David Elliot (second, left) of EKGTA who will oversee their training with Dalzell plant staff (l-r) senior engineers Jamie McCallum and Charlie McGinty and chief engineer William McWhinnie.
Apprentices (l-r) Paul Smillie, Aaron Smith, Lewis Gibson and Sean Dearie meet David Elliot (second, left) of EKGTA who will oversee their training with Dalzell plant staff (l-r) senior engineers Jamie McCallum and Charlie McGinty and chief engineer William McWhinnie.

The next generation of Lanarkshire steelworkers are ready to get to work as Liberty House has taken on its first new apprentices.

A group of seven apprentices have been taken on ahead of the reopening of the Dalzell works in Motherwell later this month.

This initial intake at Dalzell marks a positive first step in the firm’s ambitious plans to take on a continual stream of future trainees.

The trainees will work on the maintenance, repair and project management of steel production equipment at the plant.

Three of the seven are third year apprentices who were previously made redundant from Dalzell works who will re-join the workforce.

The other four apprentices, aged 16-19, will be trained in both electrical and mechanical engineering as part of the Modern Apprenticeship in Engineering, delivered by East Kilbride Group Training Association (EKGTA).

Apprentice Paul Smillie (18) said: “I’m very happy to be doing an apprenticeship with Liberty House. The group has a very strong reputation and I’m excited to start working and learning with one of the industry’s best.”

On Thursday plate steel was rolled at the plant for the first time since it was mothballed last December.

Liberty Steel UK Plates CEO Jon Bolton said: “Liberty is committed to developing a sustainable business in Scotland and therefore it is essential we invest in the workers of the future.

“These young apprentices join us at an incredibly exciting time, last week we rolled plate at Dalzell for the first time since the plant was mothballed which was an immensely emotional moment for the team and an inspiration to the young people just starting out in this industry.”