The Painting and Decorating Association (PDA) recently brought together a record number of students from across the country to compete in their annual Apprentice/Trainee of the Year contest.
Comprising of two heats, 11 students participated in the northern contest at Accrington and Rossendale College and a further 17 in the southern round at Bournemouth and Poole College.
Challenged with replicating a given design in just six hours, their skill, attention to detail and ability to work under pressure was scrutinised under the watchful eyes of the two judges, Chief Executive of the PDA, Neil Ogilvie, and Andrew Davis, of the Association of Painting Craft Teachers.
Mr Davis said: “The standard of work we’ve seen has been extremely high and every student made a committed effort to complete the task they were presented with.
“This competition takes students away from the workplace environment to demonstrate their practical painting and decorating skills they don’t necessarily use all of the time.
“Throughout the two heats we saw motivated students working safely together and they should be really proud of themselves.”
Winners will be announced at the PDA’s Premier Trophy Awards, taking place at the Plaisterers’ Hall, London, on Thursday, July 4.
Hoping to be victorious is 23-year old Reece Dudley, from Wakefield, who is studying towards his NVQ Level 2 and employed by Orion Homes.
He said: “Coming from the competition I feel a lot more confident with measuring out and putting colours together, because I don’t do it much at work as we do new-build properties.
“This is the first time that I’ve taken part in a PDA competition, but from my experiences I will definitely do another one, it’s been great.”