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Family affair for job-swap joiners

There was family rivalry when a pair of Redrow employees took part in a job swap in Manchester, for the two trading places were relatives as well as colleagues.

Area construction manager Paul Aaron had pledged to swap jobs for the day with apprentice joiner, Daniel Aaron, during National Apprenticeship Week, which has just come to an end.

And it marked the start of a UK-wide drive by the award-winning company to recruit 100 new apprentices this year.

“It was a chance to show how much Redrow values the apprentices it already has working for them while encouraging others to think about the opportunities it can offer,” said Paul, 49, from Ashton-in-Makerfield.

“The industry is short of qualified tradesman, but the apprenticeship scheme offered is not just a chance to learn a trade but a stepping stone to go forward in the construction industry for those who want it. And I should know as I began life as an apprentice myself.”

As part of the plan to promote apprenticeships the pair changed roles for the day –- with Daniel, 21, stepping up to oversee a site, and Paul taking up his tools again, to return briefly to the joinery job where it all began.

It was hard work, but fun for father-of-two Paul, who laughed: “I actually enjoyed getting my hands dirty again and getting back to my original role. I first began working on Redrow sites after completing an apprenticeship with RJ Joinery, before getting the opportunity to join Redrow as an assistant site manager in 1998.

“I subsequently rose to site manager and then my current role, which involves looking after four of Redrow Lancashire’s Manchester-based developments: Dukes Manor in Walkden, Woodland View in Prestwich, Meadow View in Oldham and St John Gardens in Moston.

“I got a bit of banter from the lads, which I was expecting, but it was really good to go back and do the job I was trained for. I put some chamber joists in, which is basically putting the first floor in once you’ve got past the window stage.”

And, instead of being the one watched on this occasion, it was Daniel’s role to be the one doing the inspecting, checking health and safety measures were up to scratch at all times, that work was being carried out up to standard and making sure any information was passed to site managers and their teams.

“I really enjoyed it,” said Daniel, also from Ashton and currently based at Dukes Manor in Walkden. “It was good to see how things work from the other side and gave me a chance to consider my career with Redrow.”

Daniel has worked on four sites up to now, including St John Gardens, one of several regeneration sites in Moston and Harpurhey, where Redrow has made a commitment to Manchester City Council to support local employment and apprenticeships.

“At the moment I am in my second year as an apprentice joiner and I love it. I get the chance to go to college one day a week and work on site the rest, learning a trade from people who have been doing the job for years while I’m getting paid too.

“I can’t wait to become a qualified joiner but the job swap made me think about whether I want to go higher with Redrow and start climbing the managerial ladder once I do. It certainly gave me a taste of what life is like on the other side and the responsibility involved.”

Over the last five years Redrow has trained more than 430 apprentices, both on site and in office roles, and has recently announced plans to recruit another 100 in 2017 as part of its ongoing commitment to help train the industry’s future talent.

Redrow Homes (Lancashire), based in Chorley, currently has 15 trade apprentices, nine in their first year, four in their second and two in their third year. They plan to recruit another seven this year.

Clare Horton, new entrant programmes manager at Redrow, said: “At Redrow we champion apprenticeships and are widely recognised for the quality of training and support we offer.”

Redrow nationally has been a Top 100 Apprenticeship Employer for the last four years.

For more on apprenticeship roles within Redrow and other career opportunities visit www.redrowcareers.co.uk.

Redrow was established in 1974. Today, it is one of the most successful and acclaimed property developers in the UK, building around 5,000 premium quality family homes a year in prime locations across England and Wales. Over Redrow’s history spanning more than 40 years, it has earned a unique reputation for quality and building beautiful homes, which people love to live in. To help achieve this it also focusses on two other key areas: valuing people and creating outstanding locations. Implementing its strategy whilst engaging with colleagues and stakeholders helps Redrow deliver significant value to investors and the wider community. Redrow is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a constituent of the FTSE 250 index. For the year ended 30th June 2016, the Group reported record revenues of £1.38 billion. Redrow has been awarded the ‘Best Large Housebuilder’ title twice in the last three years at the What House? Awards. This year, Redrow was named as a UK Top 100 Apprenticeship Employer for the fourth consecutive year. Visit redrow.co.uk for more details.