Counting down to WorldSkills

The WorldSkills UK Competitions take place next week (17-19 November) as part of the Skills Show 2016 held at Birmingham’s NEC.

The competitions, designed to ‘inspire apprentices and young people to be ambitious in their pursuit of skills excellence to raise productivity’ will see competitors go head-to-head in automotive body repair, automotive refinishing and automotive technology categories amongst many others.

Six apprentices will compete in each category for a gold medal and a chance to represent the UK at the ‘Olympic Games’ for skills, the WorldSkills event in Russia in 2019.

Automotive skills competition manager, David Massie of the IMI, said, ‘The standard of this year’s finalists is astonishing, they’re all world-class in my opinion.  I’m looking forward to a great show in November.’

Paul Sewell, lecturer vehicle body repair at Chesterfield College, which has three finalists competing (two in body repair, one in refinishing) said, ‘We have three guys in the final this year which is a great reflection on what we are trying to achieve here at Chesterfield College. They are all extremely talented individuals and we’re sure they do us all proud.

‘The team here is always striving to push our young learners to achieve high aspirations and levels of training. We have had great success in the past few years in this competition and it is especially nice for me, on a personal note, that I have two of my guys on the body side competing. Historically it’s always been my colleague, Peter Jepson and his painters that come home with the medals.’

The finalists earned their place in the Birmingham finals – supported by BMW, Car-O-Liner, DAF, Glasurit, Morelli, Pro Align, SATA, Toyota, Volvo, VW and 3M – after coming through gruelling qualifying heats involving the top apprentices in the motor industry.


This year’s finalists are:


Automotive Body Repair

Harry Devine: Body Motorworks / Chesterfield College

Shawn Dyson: Chartwell / Chesterfield College

Hayden Forrester: Excel Body Repairs / Gateshead College

Justin Mahon: Kevin Connolly Car Sales / Southern Regional College

Lewis Owers: Nationwide Crash Repair / Thatcham

Michael Sanlon: Trust Ford / Transport Training Services


Automotive Refinishing

Daniel Appleby: JD Macadam and Son / Training 2000

Kirsty Ashley: Nationwide Crash Repair / Cardiff & vale College

Tom Harris: Davies Motor Company

Christopher Jones: Sinclair Group / Cardiff & Vale College

Michael Massey: Alton Motors / Chesterfield College

Theodoros Tsouknidas: Nationwide Crash Repair / Cardiff & Vale College


Automotive Technology

Brett Gibson: Hatfields Land Rover / Jaguar Land Rover Academy

Harry Garroway: Heritage VW Van Centre / VW Apprenticeship Programme

Ryan Kane: Donnelly Group / South West College

Walter McElroy: Weston Cars / South West College

Eoin McCluskey: Desmond Motors / Northwest College

Gareth Murphy: Ian Steed / South West College