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Apprentices start at Hitachi Rail’s new £80 Million Maintenance & Test Centre in Doncaster

Posted: 25th September 2018

Hitachi’s new apprentice and graduate programmes will see the company double their number of trainees to over 100 across the UK.

Doncaster will receive five apprentices every year, with the first intake starting this week. The new recruits will attend the National Training Academy for Rail (NTAR) as well as Doncaster College as they start to study for their Level 3 in Railway Engineering.

150 young people applied for this year’s four apprentice positions, with many who were unsuccessful asked to re-apply for next year’s intake.  Doncaster received the highest amount of applications in the country for Hitachi’s apprentice programme.

Hitachi is on track to create 250 new jobs in Doncaster to maintain pioneering intercity trains.

Trainees to work on pioneering new trains

Hitachi has begun to recruit 46 new apprentices over the next two years to work at their manufacturing and maintenance sites.

Apprentices will also be employed at train maintenance depots across the UK, including Doncaster.

Hitachi has recently invested over £80m in building a new depot at Doncaster to maintain trains for the East Coast main line and Transpennine route. Apprentices will learn how to inspect and ready trains for passenger service using the latest industry technology.

The level 3 apprenticeships will last up to three years and be administrated by the National Training Academy for Rail (NTAR).  Hitachi’s apprenticeship programme is part of a new qualification standard developed by the “Trailblazer group”, where companies are allowed to set the skills and training, as well as the assessment criteria of the qualification.

Geoff Elliot, General Manager for East Coast maintenance said, said:
“We are building on Doncaster’s rich heritage in rail by creating new long-term jobs to work on pioneering new trains.

“It is vital that we have a new generation of rail workers to move the industry forward. Hitachi are maintaining trains at Doncaster for next 27 ½ years so we need to keep inspiring young people to take up careers in rail.

“We will be recruiting every year for new apprentices and encourage anyone interested to get in touch”.

Ros Jones, Mayor of Doncaster, said:
“This announcement is excellent news for Doncaster, our young people and the local economy.  I have always been a great advocate of apprenticeships as a route for young people to learn the hands on skills they need to build a successful and rewarding career so I am delighted Hitachi Rail is committed to this programme.

Nick Rudkin, Director of Business, Engagement & Apprenticeships at Doncaster College, said:

“The prospect of Doncaster College working with a high profile organisation like Hitachi was exciting and challenging at the same time. We have always been heavily involved with Rail Engineering following the history Doncaster has in this industry so when Hitachi approached the College we were keen to pioneer the Apprenticeships with Siemens and Hitachi. As a result, the first cohort ‘rolled’ out into the factory to start working on the latest trains for their employer. This year we have consolidated the offer with an additional five Apprentices getting on board our bespoke training programme. In conjunction with Siemens, we are on a rail journey of a different kind; to deliver some of the best local talent into the Rail Industry, for generations of transport users to rely on.”