A TRAINING company is calling for young people interested in a career on the railways to sign up to its apprenticeship programme.

ARC Academy UK has places available on its NVQ Level 2 and 3 courses in rail maintenance and engineering, which are delivered in partnership with the Severn Valley Railway in Kidderminster.

The apprenticeship scheme lasts a minimum of one year and has been designed to prepare participants for full-time employment in the industry.

Dave Lund-Regan, site manager for ARC Academy UK, said: “The scheme will give the young people the experience and training they need to get a job.

“It will help them get a foothold in the rail industry and provide excellent prospects for the future.

“We have run the programme before and it does work in progressing the trainees into employment.

“Working on the railways is not for everyone – it is outdoors in all weather conditions and there is a lot of night-time work and unsociable hours – but many young people really enjoy it.”

Keith Brown, senior volunteer supervisor at Severn Valley Railway, added: “Our partnership with ARC Academy provides us with workers to help with major renewal and maintenance projects on our line, which is really helpful.

“Anyone signing up to the apprenticeship programme will benefit from the banter and camaraderie that comes with working in a team and I would recommend it whole-heartedly to young people in the Kidderminster and Wyre Forest community.

“It will give them qualifications, a head-start for getting jobs and the chance to climb the career ladder.”

The 30 hours-a-week programme, which pays an apprentice wage, will include a practical placement with a Network Rail contractor and all of the required qualifications to work in the sector.

To find out more about contact Emma Watts, apprenticeship manager at ARC Academy UK, on 07788 271536 or visit arcacademyuk.com