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As the North East economy looks to bounce back from the challenges of COVID-19, the Port of Blyth has thrown its support behind a national scheme to offer crucial job opportunities to local people.
Working in conjunction with the North of Tyne Combined Authority, the Port of Blyth has engaged with the UK Government’s Kickstart programme to help a number of young people acquire new skills and gain valuable work experience at the Northumberland port.
So far three young people have joined the Port’s Operations department for an initial 6 months with potential permanent contracts available, while more trainees are expected to follow as part of the initiative which funds new job placements specifically for 16 to 24 year olds.
Craig Wood, Terminal Manager at Port of Blyth, said: “As former Port of Blyth apprentice myself, I know first hand that it has a strong history of providing jobs and apprenticeships for local people. We’re proud to be part of this scheme that supports young people at risk from long term unemployment and I’m delighted to say that so far Harvey, Shay and Alex have definitely made the most of this opportunity.”
One of the current trainees, Alex Elrod, said: “I’m excited about what this opportunity could mean for my future. We have been trained by the Port’s training division, Port Training Services, covering skills from forklift truck driving, crane operation and port safety. I live in the town, so it’s great to have the chance to show the team here what I can do. The Kickstart scheme has been a great experience for me from start to finish.”
Northumberland’s gateway to Europe, Port of Blyth is recognised as one of the UK’s leading offshore energy support bases, is home to some of the sector’s leading companies and regularly hosts high profile projects connected to North Sea oil, gas and renewables operations.