Derbyshire-based lead sheet manufacturer, Midland Lead, says it is proud to support seventeen colleges throughout the UK to help develop future skills within the construction and roofing industry.
Midland Lead supplys premium cast and rolled lead sheet to the construction industry, and says it is aware of the challenges that the sector faces with a potential skills shortage in the future. Recently it featured in the Parliamentary Review where it outlined its commitment of working to attract new talent and develop a skilled labour force in the future.
This passion for developing new talent has resulted in the company working with colleges throughout the UK, from Devon to Dundee. Since launching the initiative Midland Lead now supports seventeen colleges providing machine cast lead, tools and ancillary products free of charge. Midland Lead is also very hands on and sends its team of experts to visit many of the sites offering presentations about best practice on how to handle, store and work with lead.
Along with practical advice and supplying raw materials, Midland Lead attends a number of events and opens the doors to its specialist manufacturing factilities so that students can see how the lead manufacturing process works.
Midland Lead has built strong relationships with many construction colleges including Leeds College of Building (LCB). David Mallory, lecturer and assessor in roof slate and tiling at LCB has seen how working with manufacturers can have a positive effect on apprentices and students, he said: “Without the support that Midland Lead provides, the students wouldn’t progress with any lead work at all, and we think this is a really important aspect of them developing this as a skill.
“Unlike many building and roofing materials, working with lead is a skill that is developed through ‘getting your hands on it’, and thanks to Midland Lead supplying the materials and tools we can offer people the freedom to work with it directly. As soon as our students get the opportunity to use lead it often becomes their product of choice throughout their career and are proud to advocate using lead in the future.
“Lead alternatives aren’t always as effective and this is why we like people to learn using the ‘real thing’. Lead is high quality and easy to work with and a superior roofing product, so we really value the support and materials that Midland Lead provide to our students.”
Lynn Street, Sales and Marketing Manager at Midland Lead recognised the potential that working closely with colleges can bring: “I have been working within the roofing and construction industry for twenty years and it is clear that there is a real shortage of people choosing this industry as a career – no matter what age.
“We know how rewarding the construction industry can be to work in and it has a sustainable future offering many opportunties in the UK and overseas.
“Since working with a number of colleges we have seen a real improvement in how organisations are looking to recruit talent of the future and the results are starting to speak for themselves – but we have a long way to go to maintain the momentum and we are totally committed to making sure we play a role in supporting young people.”
Advocates of developing and supporting skills in construction, Midland Lead works closely with the CITB and NFRC, and because of this commitment it has developed a strong reputation for helping colleges around the UK, and the team say they look forward to working with many more over the next few years.