The first cohort officially starts their metals recycling careers

Sir Gerry Berragan, Chief Executive of the Institute for Apprentices, officially 'opens' the Apprenticeship

The fifth of November will be a day to remember for the metals recycling industry. It is the day it launched its first sector-specific apprenticeship. 

The celebration event, held at EMR in Willesden, saw apprentices from the seven participating companies mix with Sir Gerry Berragan, the Chief Executive of the Institute for Apprenticeships, and the Earl of Clancarty before they begin their journey as the pilot cohort of the Metal Recycling General Operative Apprenticeship. The Apprentices represent ELG Haniel, EMR, Recycled Products, Recycling Lives Limited, S Norton, Sackers, and Sims Recycling Solutions. 

Andrew Brady, Chief Operating Officer of EMR and BMRA Board member opened proceedings, saying: “The future of this industry depends on the next generation of metal recyclers and today marks the celebration of the first ever sector-specific apprenticeship. With this apprenticeship, we can now offer a specialist, professional and tailored qualification to new and existing employees.”

The first cohort of the MRGO Apprenticeship

BMRA President and MD of Recycled Products, Susie Burrage, said the launch was “gratifying” for the BMRA and acknowledged Graham Carus, formerly of EMR, who spotted the opportunity.

Susie added: “The two years of hard work by the working group has brought the apprenticeship to fruition. The tenacity of those who wrote the Occupational Standard and End-Point Assessment (EPA) Plan really shows in the final product. We are now able to show a definite and attractive career path for those looking to join the sector”. She also went on to say that the Apprenticeship will plug the skills gap and it will breathe new life into the sector.

Group CEO of EMR, Chris Sheppard (fifth from right), leads the tour of the EMR Willesden site.

Sir Gerry Berragan went on to officially ‘open’ the apprenticeship. “I want to congratulate the industry as a whole for developing the new apprenticeship and end-point assessment. This is a fine example of one of the key things that we are trying to achieve through the Institute – the introduction of new, high-quality apprenticeships to sectors that have not had them before. Each new apprenticeship starts with a blank sheet of paper and takes a huge amount of hard work and dedication to get it to a point where it is ready to launch from the trailblazing employers. I know it is not an easy process, and I was delighted to be able to help you celebrate reaching this point.”

Following the launch, all visitors were invited to a tour of the EMR facilities in Willesden. They were able to see a variety of metal turn from fully formed products into shredded scrap.

Liam Murray is a MRGO first cohort apprentice at Sackers: “This is going to give me useful knowledge and make me more useful to my company. I feel good that I’m going to be getting some really good training, but will also be paid at the same time.”

BMRA would like to thank all of those who are involved in the working group with particular thanks to the Standard and EPA subgroup, including: Antonia Grey, BMRA; Sue Perks, ELG; Chris Williams, EMR; Chris Williams, Sims; Claire Dallison, Recycling Lives; and, Lorraine Allen, S. Norton.

You can learn more about the apprenticeship on the Institute for Apprenticeships website.  

Read the press release here.

The apprenticeship also has its own social media accounts:

Twitter: @MRGO_Apprentice

Facebook: MRGOApprentice

Apprentices were joined by Sir Gerry Berragan, the Earl of Clancarty and representatives of their companies.