National Apprenticeship Week: Monday 6 Feb to Friday 10 Feb
A local Kendal businessman who started his career as a 16 year old apprentice in 1989 is marking national apprenticeship week by celebrating his firm’s first recruit.
Seventeen year old Stuart Waring from Holme, joined Kendal auction house Eighteen Eighteen Auctioneers last August as part of his apprenticeship in business administration with Kendal College. Stuart’s start mirrors Kevin Kendal’s who also left school to start work at the local auction to learn a trade whilst earning a wage.
However the similarities stop there. As part of his Government apprenticeship programme Stuart attends college once a week to study a mixture of subjects including key skills, principles of business administration and employment rights and responsibilities. At the end of the academic year he should achieve a level two qualification. For Kevin there was no organised scheme but he did take the auctioneer and appraisers exam via a mix of correspondence and tutoring in Scotland qualifying in 1998 as a fellow of the Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers.
“My motivations to start working as soon as I could are very similar to Stuart’s. I didn’t want to stay on at school do more formal learning I wanted the freedom and independence that the world of work brings. Working at the auction was supposed to be a stop-gap measure but here I am running one of the area’s leading auction houses.” says Kevin.
“As a firm we are growing and so this apprenticeship scheme is perfect for us. We’ve got someone who is learning on the job, who is getting to grips with the basic aspects of our business and who has every opportunity to grow with us.”
So far Stuart’s tasks have included answering the phone, dealing with enquiries, packing and unpacking items that have come in for valuation or have been bought, taking his turn on the tea and coffee rota, and helping out at roadshow valuation days.
“I am meeting lots of people, getting to know the regulars and learning a lot. It’s very different from being at school and I am really enjoying it. I am using some of my wages to pay for driving lessons which should mean even more independence for me. It’s also good to meet up with other apprentices on our college day.”
The firm, one of only four auction houses in the North West to meet membership standards of the Society of Fine Art Auctioneers and Valuers, employs nine staff and has recently taken on an apprentice.
For further information please contact Kevin Kendal, Saleroom Manager and Auctioneer, on 0845 812 1818.