Grantham Journal Big Interview: Apprentice of the Year Ashley looks to year ahead with confidence
The next 12 months has never looked so positive for this year’s Apprentice of the Year.
Since walking away with the trophy at the Grantham Journal Business Awards last month, Ashley Pemberton, from Grantham Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (GRAC), is looking ahead with confidence, especially after passing his final exam.
We caught up with the 23-year-old, who used to attend the Grantham Central School and then Basford Hall College in Nottingham on day release, earlier this week to see how he is adjusting to life at work as an award winner.
What does it mean to the company to win Apprentice of the Year?
It means such a great deal to the company. GRAC have invested in training young apprentices and giving them the opportunity to learn a skilled trade. It benefits them as they know that the young person is being taught the correct procedures and doing the job to the best of their ability.
It is particularly important to them when there is nationally as well as locally a shortage of skilled tradesmen and particularly in this trade.
For those who are not aware of the business, please tell us a bit about GRAC and what you do?
We supply and install new air conditioning units, new refrigeration units, coldrooms, cellar coolers and all other types of refrigeration.
We carry out maintenance services on all air conditioning and refrigeration units. We also repair all air conditioning units, refrigeration units, cellar coolers, ice machines and blast chillers.
We have recently been awarded Daikin D1 approved installers recognition.
This gives the client peace of mind that we are fully trained to the highest level and install the system to the highest standards.
We are all certified f-gas engineers and are part of the safe contractor scheme.
What are your main responsibilities?
I have to make sure that all the essential tools and equipment are ready for the daily jobs and future jobs. I also need to carry out out maintenance services on the air conditioning and refrigeration units and install new air conditioning units.
I carry out quarterly review meetings with sites to ensure paper work, work schedules are up to date.
Why do you think you won the award?
Mainly for my enthusiastic attitude and my passion for the business.
I think it is also due to how far I have progressed and learnt over the two years that I have been working for GRAC.
What is your vision for the future and/or your next steps?
I have passed my final exam so I am now fully qualified. I have also done an Asbestos awareness course.
I am looking forward to progressing further in my career as a fully qualified engineer and moving up the ladder within the business.