Navy’s commitment to apprentices sees it win special recognition award at glitzy ceremony

THE Naval Service’s dedication to apprenticeships has seen it win a top honour at an awards night.

The National Apprenticeship Awards were held in London on Wednesday and the Royal Navy, Royal Marines and Royal Fleet Auxiliary were honoured with a Special Recognition Award.

It comes after the Naval Service was rated Outstanding by Ofsted in March for its apprenticeship programme, which saw it rank in the top two of UK providers with a cohort of 1,000 or more apprentices for its achievement rates.

All sailors who join the Royal Navy as a junior rating automatically undertake an apprenticeship when they go through their basic training and can then go to earn higher education qualifications. 

Damian Hinds, the Secretary of State for Education, presented the award to Commodore Andy Cree - who also got to present the Large Employer of the Year Award, which the Royal Navy sponsored, to winners KMF Precision Sheet Metal.

Learning and development opportunities are plentiful and is at the heart of what we do.

Commander Allan Youp, Head of Naval Service Apprenticeships

Cdre Cree, Assistant Chief of Staff (Training) said: “We were very proud to receive this national award in what has been an amazing year for the Naval Service Apprenticeship Programme, which has included being judged as an ‘outstanding provider’ of apprenticeships by Ofsted.

“We were also proud to have sponsored and presented the Large Employer of the Year Award and get involved with the event. Our sponsorship reflects our resolute commitment in promoting and developing apprentices through their career ensuring they possess the skills required by a modern, high-tech navy.”

Commander Allan Youp, Head of Naval Service Apprenticeships, added: “We are one of the larger employer-providers and have over 3,000 apprentices under training annually. 

“All ratings undertake an apprenticeship when they join the Naval Service and have opportunities to progress and gain a range of qualifications from GCSEs to a Master’s Degree. Learning and development opportunities are plentiful and is at the heart of what we do. Apprentices are our future.”

The glitzy awards ceremony at Old Billingsgate was attended by a range of employers from a variety of industries. This year’s event had the theme Excellence in Apprenticeships and showcased individual and employer success stories.

MP Mr Hinds said: “The National Apprenticeship Awards is a fantastic event to celebrate the achievements of apprentices, employers and training providers.”

The RAF and Army also received Special Recognition Awards on the night.