A NEW partnership helping unemployed residents gain new skills has hosted an event in Winsford.

Leading container repair specialist UK Container Maintenance joined forces with Jobcentre Plus and recruitment company Momentum to hold the workshops at its Road One warehouse.

The initiative trained unemployed people living in the area in the skill of welding, to re-introduce the profession as a career choice for the younger generation and plug a skill shortage in the industry.

The course provided candidates with classroom-based teaching and hands-on experience.

Liz Wolstenholme, UKCM operations director, said: “The scheme provided people with the opportunity to learn new skills, and achieve a nationally recognised accreditation, to support their employment in the future.

"Some of the successful candidates have also joined our team here at our Winsford site, which just proves the success of the initiative and the commitment of the candidates.”

UKCM factory director Ben Clarke added: “We are delighted to have welcomed two of the trainees to the team, both of which have accepted permanent, full-time positions within the company.”

Megan Rosney from Jobcentre Plus said: “We’re delighted for UKCM and our local jobseekers who have secured employment following this workshop.

"Jobcentre Plus supports thousands of local jobseekers every day to get into work and reach their full potential.”

Tom Winbow, Business Development manager at Momentum, added: “As people continue to favour other career paths, the demand for welders has steadily increased year on year, creating a skill shortage.

"This partnership has allowed us to train people for an industry that is looking to recruit, helping people get back into work.”

UKCM, the UK’s largest family-owned container repair and refurbishment company now turns over £6 million per year and employs more than 60 people.