Right Royal reception ahead of Leeds Apprenticeship Awards 2014

Hard-working Leeds apprentices and their employers will enjoy an evening fit for royalty when they attend a prestigious awards ceremony next week.

The third annual Leeds Apprenticeship Awards take place on Tuesday, March 4, and will proudly welcome His Royal Highness The Duke of York KG to Leeds Civic Hall.

His Royal Highness will attend a special reception ahead of the main ceremony, where he will meet with a number of the apprentice nominees.

The reception is part of The Duke’s visit to the Leeds City Region, which has been organised to encourage more small businesses to recruit apprentices.

The ceremony, which takes place in the Civic Hall’s banqueting suite, is being held during National Apprenticeship Week, which runs from March 3-7.

The much sought-after awards will be given out in six categories across two areas and are aimed at recognising the outstanding contribution of the winning apprentices as well as the investment made by employers to improve the skills of their workforce.

Apprentice of the Year will be awarded to nominees in the intermediate, advanced and higher categories and will celebrate the exceptional achievements of individuals during their apprenticeships.

Employer of the Year will also be awarded to small, medium and large employers and is aimed at recognising their investment in skills as well as showcasing the many benefits apprentices bring to local businesses.

Speakers at the ceremony will include Councillor Judith Blake deputy leader of Leeds City Council, and Cllr Lucinda Yeadon, executive member for leisure and skills.

Cllr Yeadon said: “The Leeds Apprenticeship Awards are a great opportunity to celebrate the invaluable contribution apprentices make to consistently helping our city and its economy thrive.

“The build-up to this year’s awards has been even more exciting knowing we will welcome such a prestigious visitor and I’m sure the evening will be a huge success.”

She added: “Leeds is a city with a proud tradition of ensuring those who want to forge a career for themselves have the opportunity to do so, and National Apprenticeship Week is a chance for us all to encourage even more businesses and individuals to get involved in the apprenticeship programme.”

As well as the awards, a number of events will take place across Leeds during National Apprenticeship Week.

They will include a marketing stand to inform people about apprenticeships and current vacancies, which will be in place at the Trinity Leeds shopping centre, Monday-Friday, 3pm-8pm.

And a mini market place event will see careers teachers at Corpus Christi school getting information about apprenticeships to pass on to their pupils on Wednesday, March 5 from 3.30pm until 5.30pm.


Additional information:

- The Duke's visit to Leeds is being led by Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP). His Royal Highness will officially launched the Leeds City Region Apprenticeship Challenge which aims to secure 1,000 small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) offering apprenticeships across the region during the next financial year.

- His Royal Highness will meet apprentices and students at Leeds City College's new £26 million Printworks campus on Hunslet Road, and at Leeds College of Building's Stourton site on Intermezzo Drive, and speak with SMEs and apprentices at a business conference at the Royal Armouries, organised by the LEP.

For more information or to confirm attendance at the awards, contact:

Stuart Robinson

Communications Officer

Leeds City Council

Tel: 0113 224 3937

Email: stuart.robinson@leeds.gov.uk