Lewis is hired as firm’s apprentice

Banks Mining apprentice Lewis Coyle.

A Cramlington resident is kicking off his career after becoming regional employer Banks Mining’s latest Northumberland apprentice.

Lewis Coyle was chosen from a considerable number of applicants for the plant mechanic apprenticeship at its Shotton surface coal mine near the town.

It will see him undertake a comprehensive three-year programme combining on-the-job practical training with theoretical classroom-based learning at Northumberland College.

The 22-year-old will be working directly with highly experienced Banks employees to learn skills that will be useful to him through his entire working life, as well as alongside the six other apprentices that are currently part-way through their training period with the County Durham-headquartered firm.

Keith Tarn, group human resources manager at The Banks Group, said: “Providing this sort of opportunity for talented young people clearly benefits both employers and their new employees, and we’ve seen first-hand the positive impact that apprentices can bring to businesses like ours.

“We had some very strong candidates for this latest apprenticeship position, with Lewis presenting an impressive combination of personal and practical qualities which made him the stand-out candidate for the role.

Run in conjunction with Northumberland College, Banks Mining’s apprenticeship recruitment programme involved a number of different stages – with the applications received initially being reviewed and whittled down to the final 12.

A candidate day was then held. It included senior Banks Mining personnel giving a company overview to the potential recruits and detailing the work they would be undertaking if they were successful.

Three candidates were then chosen to attend a final assessment day at the Shotton site, which involved computer-based assessments, practical tests and individual interviews.

The firm is expecting to create further apprenticeship positions in 2018.

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