Rory backed the UK’s National Apprenticeship week initiative with a visit to Cranstons in Penrith last Friday. At Cranstons Rory donned apron and gloves and was shown by apprentice Chris Mitchell how to fillet and stuff a chicken ready for sale. Rory met and chatted with butcher apprentices at the Penrith food store, and talked to staff, managers and trainers.

Rory said: “Apprenticeships are vital in Penrith and the Border. It provides a wonderful transition to the workplace for young people and has an important role in education. The skills which the Cranston’s apprentices are learning will set them up for life. They are studying in a practical environment, and developing both professionally and personally. We need to do all we can to encourage businesses to take on more apprentices. And we must encourage those seeking employment to consider apprenticeships for either a career change or a career path. Cranstons is a great Cumbrian business and I am so impressed by their leadership in apprenticeships.”

Philip Cranston, Managing Director, said: “We hire apprentices as we recognise the value of equipping people with the basic skills they need for the trade and developing them slowly over a number of years into master craftsman. We think it is important to train people in a structured way and to give them qualifications to accompany the practical side of the job. In the 1930s, Cranstons founder Stanley Cranston took on his nephew James Cranston – Cranstons’ first ever apprentice – and we’re proud that the tradition has continued ever since.”
Rory learning the ropes at Cranstons
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