British Energy signs contract to train the country’s future power station workers

British Energy, the UK’s largest electricity supplier, has signed a £10 million, seven-year partnership contract with Flagship Training to deliver its apprentice programme from September 2008.

Flagship will create and deliver an advanced modern apprenticeship training programme for British Energy, which runs eight nuclear power stations and one coal-fired power station across the UK.

From September 2008, Flagship, which is the Royal Navy’s training partner, will train each new intake of apprentices at their academy, based in HMS Sultan, Gosport, Hampshire.

The residential scheme will combine technical engineering training, with a comprehensive life skills programme.

David Barber, BE’s head of technical training, said: “This will be the first time that we have brought all of our apprentices together under one training regime, and we think the benefits for them and for us as a company will be tremendous.

“The training experience they will get at Flagship’s Academy will be second to none and will ensure that the technicians we return to our stations will be a real asset. British Energy’s world class safety standards, our values and our expectations are built into the programme. We are developing mature and capable employees who will come back to our power stations to make a major contribution both in the stations we operate today and hopefully in any new nuclear power stations we run in the future.

“Flagship is an excellent fit with our exacting standards. We undertook a review of our external providers and Flagship provided the best option. Through them we can use the Royal Navy’s spare capacity. Ships’ propulsion units and generators are like self-contained power stations and submarines contain their own nuclear reactor. It provides the perfect training ground.”

Flagship’s managing director, Ron Sams, said: ‘We are delighted to be working with British Energy to deliver this residential training programme, which has been designed to meet their industry’s individual and exacting requirements.

“By integrating the necessary technical training with a full life skills programme, Flagship will deliver a total training package which will help British Energy to attract and retain the high quality personnel needed in its industry.

“This will ensure that their future technicians are equipped to maintain the wide range of original design equipment and emerging technology which is key to British Energy’s ability to generate power for the country.  We are delighted to be helping them to train their people for this important task.”

Under the new contract, five annual intakes of apprentices will be trained at HMS Sultan and accommodated at nearby HMS Collingwood in Fareham.

HMS Sultan is the largest of the Royal Navy’s training establishments and is devoted to engineering training excellence.

Commodore Al Rymer RN, HMS Sultan, said:  ‘This is an excellent example of the public sector and industry working together for the benefit of the country as a whole. These apprentices will be taught using the Navy’s custom built engineering training facilities and I look forward to welcoming them to HMS Sultan.”

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