Wadworth, the independent family brewer and pub operator in Wiltshire is embracing apprenticeships in their business and has welcomed the government initiative “Fire it Up” to promote apprenticeships.
The family business has apprenticeships across both their pub business and at their support centre in Devizes. In their pubs they have several on Level 3 Senior Production Chef and Levels 3 and 4 in Hospitality Management.
Speaking about the apprenticeship programme in their pubs, operations manager Toby Bartholomew said, “As a newly-formed food development team one of our goals is to bring in and retain new chef talent into our pubs. It is well-known the struggles our industry is facing in recruiting fantastic chefs that bring creative ideas and stability to the kitchen. To address this issue, we recognise the importance of apprenticeships within our estate to help develop enthusiastic talent that is the future of Wadworth and to ensure our food offer is always on-trend. We are looking to invest our time and energy into fantastic apprentices, that get the best training, come out with the necessary qualifications which leads to a bright future. Home-grown talent is what we want to achieve at Wadworth”.
Wadworth’s support centre team are also heavily involved in apprenticeship schemes with five of the team taking various levels in Business Administration, with one apprentice achieving Level 4 Award in Marketing with the Chartered Institute of Marketing and another gaining a Level 5 Diploma in HR Management.
Chris Welham CEO for Wadworth is a firm believer that apprenticeships are the answer to building a career in the hospitality sector and says, ““People often wrongly think that working in a pub is just a stop gap role; something you do until you move into another industry that will pass the ‘Mum and Dad test’. I totally disagree. I started working in a pub and I learned a lot of life skills and a great deal about leading and managing people. I also realised that the career opportunities are numerous, not just in the pub but the wider areas of business related to supporting the success of the pub. After all, breweries and pub companies having marketing departments, engineering and sales teams, human resources, finance departments and much more. There are countless examples of people in our industry who have done what I have - worked our way up from bar to boardroom. I’m a big believer that it you put your mind to it and work hard you can make your career whatever you want it to be in this industry and that is why Wadworth supports apprenticeships.”
The government launched the “fire it up” campaign to promote higher level apprenticeships for young people. Damian Hinds, Education Secretary said at the launch, “We are seeing the apprenticeship system in this country come of age, with leading employers waking up to the benefits apprenticeships can bring.
“The sad truth is that outdated and snobby attitudes are still putting people off apprenticeships which means they’re missing out on great jobs and higher salaries – many of them in the sorts of firms graduates look to land jobs with after university.
“It’s vital that we challenge people’s thinking about apprenticeships which is why the Government’s new ‘Fire It Up’ campaign will aim to shift deeply held views and drive more people towards an apprenticeship.
“At the same time we need to make sure that young people have access to information about all of the opportunities that are out there so we are taking action to make sure all schools invite a wide range of providers in to help young people choose the right career path for them.”
Wadworth is committed to growing its apprenticeship programmes in both its pubs, kitchens and its brewery and support centre with a plan that recruiting through a quality apprenticeship ensures you have the right skills you need in the business and retain people for longer.