Meet Bradlee Herriott who helps maintain green spaces in Nuneaton

Bradlee Herriott has been an apprentice on Glendale’s contract with Whitefriars Housing Group since September 2013. He was recruited through the Group’s Coventry Boot Camp, which is a two-week course increasing the employability of ‘NEET’ 16 to 19-year-olds in the local area.

Bradlee comments: “Before I started on the apprenticeship with Glendale I was a ‘dole dosser’.  I moved out of my mum’s when I was 16 and went to college.  I qualified with a City and Guilds in Painting and Decorating but it wasn’t what I wanted to do, it was just the only choice I had because I didn’t have good enough grades.  I left college and worked in a warehouse for a while before going to the De Vere Academy at the Ricoh Arena to do an apprenticeship as a chef.  I lasted three months!  I didn’t enjoy it so I went back to another warehouse.”

The day before his 19th birthday Bradlee started the Coventry Boot Camp, where he undertook a series of interviews for apprenticeship positions with local businesses including Whitefriars Housing Group.

Bradlee comments: “I got the job with Whitefriars Housing Group clearing bulk, doing landscaping and removing graffiti.  I was offered six months of work experience with the possibility of a full-time position but unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way.”

Worried about his future, Bradlee got in touch with the organisers of the Coventry Boot Camp in order to explore other avenues of employment.  They agreed to set him up with three more interviews including one with Glendale.  Bradlee secured a place on Glendale’s apprenticeship through this interview and was happy with the stability the company offered.

He said: “It is important that local businesses provide apprenticeships as long as they keep you on.  When I had my interview with Glendale they told me that as long as I did well and got my qualifications then I’d become an employee.  They wanted me to work up from apprentice, to team leader, maybe to supervisor, maybe the manager, maybe even higher.  That really caught my eye.”

In April 2015 Bradlee transferred over to Glendale’s contract with Nuneaton Borough Council for the last six months of his apprenticeship.  In October 2015 he completed his apprenticeship with an NVQ Level 2 in Amenity Horticulture and a wide range of practical skills.  Completing the course has been one of the most rewarding achievements in his career so far.

He said: “The advantage of the apprenticeship scheme with Glendale is that it gives you more career opportunities, which is what I wanted.  One of my favourite aspects of the apprenticeship, and in fact my job now, is using the ride on mowing machinery.  It’s different to anything I’ve done before and I like the responsibility.”

Barry Bolton, contract manager comments: “ He has such great vision for the future, he is still in the early stages of his career but he is determined to learn and he really wants to progress with us.  I’d like to see him move through the ranks.  Our apprenticeships are essential because people like Bradlee are a feature of our business.  It is important that our operatives learn from the ground up, it allows them to become highly accomplished and gives us the opportunity to mould them into the best they can be.  At the end of the day, our people  are our biggest asset.”


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