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30/05/13: Apprentices drive to success thanks to new fleet of eco-vans

Future engineers on the North West’s power network are benefiting from their very own fleet of customised vans to help them travel the region during their four-year training. Apprentices with operations director Greg Fernie and new vans

Electricity North West, the company which owns and maintains the regional power network, has invested almost £70k in eight new environmentally-friendly vans for the students as part of their ‘on-the-job’ training.

Apprentices must successfully complete work on site, including helping to repair faults on underground cables or on overhead power lines from Macclesfield to Carlisle.

Greg Fernie, operations director for Electricity North West, said: “We are delighted to add eight new vans into our fleet and they will undoubtedly help our young apprentices successfully complete their studies.

“We’re making sure that we’re giving the right people the right training to help us power the region for years to come. These new vans are just one of the ways that we make our training more efficient.”

Electricity North West has also invested £2m in a new state-of-the-art training academy in Lancashire which is currently under construction and will be completed in September.

Apprentice Ben Ashurst, 20, from Chorley, Lancashire said: “We’re over the moon about the new vans. They will help us a lot during our training as we have to travel across the region everyday and they’re also great to drive.”

The new vehicles are fitted with rev-limiters, trackers and reversing cameras and all apprentices will have to complete additional driver training and competency assessments before driving the vans.

Electricity North West funds specific electrical qualifications and alongside school-leavers, the company also offers training programmes accredited by the Institute of Engineering and Technology, which cater for both A-level students and graduates who are also looking for a career in the energy industry.

For more information about Electricity North West’s apprenticeship schemes please visit

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