Advanced Manufacturing Forum
t: 0191 481 3480 

Newsletter - Liebherr Apprentices in National Contest


Liebherr"s Apprentices

A GROUP of North East trainee welders, electricians, fitters and machinists are bidding to become team of the year in a national contest to find the country’s leading apprentices.

A team made up of nine apprentices from Liebherr Sunderland Works have entered the Brathay Apprentice Challenge 2015, the official search for the nation’s apprentice team of the year.  The challenge, which is organised by the National Apprenticeship Service, tests apprentices on their team building, leadership, logistical and communications abilities in a series of tasks over the next few months.

As part of the project, the apprentices are currently working alongside The Southwick Community Project, which is part of the Salvation Army, and are putting their skills to good use by helping create a memorial garden for the community to use.  The team will also be helping a fantastic charity, Team George, by cycling 54 miles from Nenthead on March 13th.  The team has also been going into local schools to promote apprenticeships and engineering, taking a portable welding booth to give the students first-hand experience of their work at Liebherr.

More than 700 teams from across the country are taking part in the challenge.  They will be whittled down to a final eight at the House of Commons in April, and the finalists will then battle it out to be crowned apprentice team of the year.  

Ralph Saelzer, managing director of Liebherr Sunderland Works, said: “We’re really delighted that our apprentices are taking part in this challenge. 

“The work they do is fantastic, so it’s good that they have the opportunity to put their skills to use in a way that benefits the community, put also allows them to test themselves against other apprentices across the North East.”

The winning team will be announced in June. 

Godfrey Owen, Chief Executive of organisers, Brathay Trust, said: “The tasks that the teams complete as part of the challenge allow the apprentices to develop a huge range of skills.  These are skills that are not only useful within the Challenge but essential for the workplace.  It is good to see so many companies including Liebherr Sunderland Works engaging their apprentices in such a Challenge.”

The challenge focuses on offering an enhanced apprenticeship, developing skills like team building, leadership and communications – many of which are found in the top positions within business.

Karen Woodward, from the National Apprenticeship Service said: “We are pleased to welcome Liebherr Sunderland Works into this year’s Brathay Apprentice Challenge.  The activities that the apprentices undertake in the Challenge are part of an enhanced Apprenticeship which benefits both employers and apprentices; employers gain a workforce wit transferable skills throughout the business while apprentices themselves become more employable and more likely to be promoted.”

Follow the team’s progress on

For more information on the Brathay Apprentice Challenge and to apply, visit


Website Maintained by True Momentum