A trainee plumber from Upwell is cutting his teeth working on a £30m redevelopment in King’s Lynn.
Billy Smith, a student at the College of West Anglia, has secured a plumbing apprenticeship with housing regeneration firm Lovell.
The 19-year-old is working under supervision on a major project for Freebridge Community Housing at Lynn’s Hillington Square.
Billy is combining work on site with attending the college in Tennyson Avenue on day release.
He began studying for a Level 2 NVQ qualification in plumbing in September and was put forward for the apprenticeship by tutors at the college.
The scheme will enable him to acquire the practical experience he needs to fully qualify as a plumber, all while earning a wage.
“I’m over the moon to be starting my apprenticeship with Lovell,” Billy said.
“This is a great opportunity for me as it is a big company and it will give me the chance to gain high-quality practical experience.
“I first became interested in plumbing when I worked on building sites as a labourer – I spoke to the plumbers on site and they told me it was a brilliant career.
“I like the fact that it involves a wide range of skills: with my training behind me, I will have the chance to go in a number of different directions.”
Lovell began work on the regeneration programme in August and it includes replacement kitchen and bathrooms at the 320 flats.
The project will also see balconies re-built, new staircases and lifts installed and garages remodelled at the estate.
Lovell construction manager Michael Saunders said: “As a company, our goal is to leave a lasting legacy of benefits wherever we work.
“Providing training and job opportunities locally is very much part of that commitment.
“Billy is highly motivated and we’re delighted to be helping him progress his construction career as a Lovell apprentice.”
So far on the project, Billy has been helping the team from Lovell to carry out preparatory work at the town centre site ready for the removal of the existing plumbing and heating systems.