UK’s leading safety company funding apprentice at local building, repair and maintenance business

Hull-based safety products and services company, Arco, has linked up with Kingstown Works Limited (KWL) to fund an apprentice joiner at the business.

Leanne White, Learning and Development Coordinator, and Claire Good, Quality and Compliance Manager, at KWL, with Darren Ford, Head of Organisational Development and Learning and Development, and Alice Marren, Learning and Development Partner, from Arco.

The announcement comes during National Apprenticeship Week, a week-long celebration that brings together businesses and apprentices across the country to shine a light on the positive impact that apprenticeships make to individuals, businesses and the wider economy.

As the UK’s only integrated safety services and products business, with a core purpose of keeping people safe, Arco is delighted to have partnered with KWL to fund the important role through its levy funding.

KWL provides extensive property services to approximately 26,000 homes in the Hull area, which includes refurbishment of dwellings, as well as delivering gas and maintenance services to over 22,000 homes.

Darren Ford, Head of Organisational Development and Learning and Development at Arco, said: “At Arco, we are dedicated to developing the knowledge and skills of our colleagues and apprenticeships are a great way to do this. We’ve had 42 people complete an apprenticeship and have a further 33 ongoing. Our commitment to apprentices and apprenticeships saw us recognised as one of the top 10 family business apprentice employers in the UK.

“As a responsible choice of safety partner, one of our ambitions within the community is to help young people to achieve. We are therefore delighted to be linking up with a Hull-based company to support them in appointing an apprentice from a local school.”

Leanne White, Learning and Development Coordinator at KWL, said: “Since 2007, KWL has recruited 159 apprentices. As a company, we are extremely proud to have been able to recruit so many talented apprentices’ year-on-year.

“The Government recently introduced funding transfers which has allowed KWL to work with larger companies, such as Arco.

“These relationships allow KWL to continue recruiting a healthy number of apprentices which not only grows our own sustainable workforce but continues to improve the skills and future employment opportunities for local people.”

The new partnership is the latest example of Arco supporting apprenticeships within the community and follows a previous apprenticeship that the business funded at Martin House Hospice.

Gillian Beverley joined the charity as a Safety, Health and Environmental Advisor in 2022 to undertake a safety, health and environment technician apprenticeship.

Gillian said: “Changing careers in my 40s has been daunting, but this apprenticeship has given me the chance to learn on the job, combining training and new skills and giving me the confidence to pursue something I’m passionate about.”

Matt Ward, Head of Estates at Martin House Hospice, said: “Gillian has been a great addition to both the estates team and Martin House as a whole. Gillian has picked the role up very quickly and is excelling in her apprenticeship as well as in the workplace.

“Partnering with Arco has been a really positive experience. They have supported us with the apprenticeship levy to enable the role, but they also kindly funded IOSH Managing Safely as an addition. This has provided a strong platform for Gillian to build from for her safety, health and environmental course.”