Cornwall Group has pledged to create ten new apprenticeships before the end of this year as part of its continuing commitment to support the up skilling of workers in the glass industry.

The group, which includes Cornwall Glass Manufacturing, Cornwall Glass and Glazing, and its glass merchanting business Mackenzie Glass, aims to ensure that at any given time, 10% of its workforce is made up from apprentices or former apprentices.

Chairman Mark Mitchell said: “It’s very important that we continue to attract young people into the glass industry and develop the right skills set. We have a long-standing apprenticeships programme, in fact two of our current managing directors joined as factory floor apprentices, so the opportunities for people who are willing to work hard are pretty much limitless.

“Covid-19 did impact our ability to bring new people in last year but we are committed to catching up on our recruitment programme in the months ahead and will aligned to target by the years end.”

The Building Our Skills Campaign continues to promote apprenticeships within the glass and glazing industries, however, recruitment remains a challenge for businesses at large, with nationally only 40,000 young people starting apprenticeships last year – half the figure for 2019 – because of the impact of Covid-19. 

Mark added: “One of the things that is going to be different this time around is that two of our apprenticeships will be recruited to the night shift at our Plymouth manufacturing site, with the training providers working around shift patterns to deliver training.”