West Cheshire College’s annual Freemen and Guilds Awards evening
Top students from Ellesmere Port are celebrating after receiving prizes at West Cheshire College’s annual Freemen and Guilds Awards evening at the Guild Hall in Chester.
The prizes, given out to 15 students from the college, recognise the hard work and achievement of students working in industry and commerce in the North West.
The awards are a tradition spanning back to 1968 and represent the historic bond between education and the companies of the Freemen and Guilds, who support the recruitment and training of Apprentices within their trades.
The Freemen and Guilds of Chester is made up of 23 companies including the Joiners and Carvers Company, Saddlers and Curriers, Cappers, Pinners, Wierdrawers and Linendrapers and Barber Surgeons, and the Wax and Wallow Chandlers Company.
Rachel Parsonage, 19, from Ellesmere Port, studies Level 3 NVQ in catering, kitchen and larder and won the Innholders, Cooks and Victuallers Company Award.
She said: “I’ve always been interested in cooking but never had the right skills to start a career in the industry before enrolling onto the course.
“I enjoyed it so much that I have started the level 3 patisserie course as my dream is to work in a bakery.
“It has been a tough year for me as I had family bereavements but the college has been so supportive. I’m so impressed that I have won this award as I did not expect it at all.”
Matthew Tyson, 19, from Ellesmere Port, studied an apprenticeship in plumbing and won the Smiths, Cutlers and Plumbing Award.
He said: “I’ve learnt so much from doing an apprenticeship and working as a plumber full-time.
“Completing the apprenticeship means I am now a fully-qualified plumber. However, I have decided to enrol onto a level 3 plumbing course to improve my skills further - my long-term goal is to become a plumbing supervisor.”
Carole McLennay, editor of the Freemen and Guild Newsletter, said: “The Freemen and Guilds have, over centuries, strongly supported education and educational charities and remain proud and happy to continue to do so. The rewards can be seen in the achievements witnessed.”
West Cheshire College principal, Nigel Davies, who presented the awards, said: “At West Cheshire College we are enormously proud of our partnership with the Freeman and Guilds Awards as it celebrates the heritage of Chester.
“The winners have been selected out of thousands of students, which clearly demonstrates just how hard they have worked to be here tonight. I congratulate each and every one of them on their achievements.”