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Apprentices Go for Gold

An apprentice from Belfast is the first competitor from Northern Ireland to take part in the Painting and Decorating Association’s Apprentice of the Year competition.

Charlie Montgomery, 17, from Carrickfergus, travelled from Belfast to Birmingham to take part in the third regional heat of the new-format Apprentice of the Year competition at Longbridge construction campus of South & City College Birmingham.

Charlie was one of 13 apprentices from eight colleges to take part in the gruelling six-hour challenge, which requires apprentices to take a complex design on paper and translate it into a carefully completed ‘mural’.

Lecturer in painting and decorating at South & City College Birmingham, Mark Morris said: “We’re really excited to have hosted the PDA’s Apprentice of the Year competition event for the first time.

“It’s been great to watch the apprentices put their skills to the test and see them really engage with the competition.”

Top-scoring apprentices from the regional heats held in Accrington, Birmingham, Glasgow and Kent, will battle it out in a Grand Final to be held at Doncaster College and University Centre.

The competition is judged by Andrew Davis from the Association of Painting Craft Teachers (APCT) and PDA Chief Executive, Neil Ogilvie.

The Apprentice of the Year winners will be announced at the PDA’s flagship Premier Trophy Awards ceremony, held at the prestigious Plaisterers’ Hall in London.

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