The doors to the rapidly expanding wind and renewables sector are to be blown wide open at a special event, which organiser, Maersk Training, confidently expects hundreds of jobseekers will attend

Taking place on Thursday September 4, from 10am to 4pm, it follows a similar open day last year that attracted 400 people keen to learn more about Maersk Training’s range of educational programmes, including the Level 1 Certificate in Becoming a Wind Turbine Technician (Onshore and Offshore) and Level 2 Diploma in Staying Safe in the Wind Industry (Onshore and Offshore).

Held at Newcastle’s Assembly Rooms, on Fenkle Street, the open day is part of a drive to fill roles in the burgeoning wind industry. Representatives from Maersk Training, Job Centre, National Careers Service, South Tyneside Council and various employers from within the wind industry will be in attendance.

The diploma is taught by industry experts such as Paul Richards, an ex-army engineer who was hired by Maersk Training after he completed the level 2 diploma with flying colours. Paul, who turned to the diploma in a bid to get back into industry after a lengthy absence, said; “I was really looking for a way back into engineering when I heard about the Maersk diploma.

"Thankfully, a lot of my basic skills from the Army were still useful so the diploma really acted as a sort of transfer course for me but it was interesting to see how the industry has moved on over the last decade and to update my knowledge. It became clear that Maersk is a world leader in this area and that made me all the more excited to complete the course.”

Leaving school at 16 to join the Royal Engineers, Paul, now 44, rose to the rank of Corporal and served in Bosnia and Canada before joining the prison service. Spurred on by a desire to pick up his tools once more, Paul joined and completed Maersk Training’s inaugural ‘Staying Safe in the Wind Turbine Environment (onshore and offshore)’ level 2 diploma last year, securing a place on the course just two days before the commencement date.

With his background in engineering, including ten and a half years in in the Army and three years within local industry, Paul sailed through the twelve week course and was quickly snapped up when Maersk Training came to expand its roster of instructors and Paul is now using his skills, both new and old, to pass on valuable technical knowledge to the next generation of wind turbine workers, providing guidance on health and safety and technical elements.

Paul, added: “I finished the course in January and was offered the training role in February so it was a pretty quick turnaround considering I’d spent quite a few years out of industrial work. I’ve always had an interest in training since it was a large part of my work in the Royal Engineers, but the diploma course has been great for me and it’s nice to see an industry in this area that is doing so well.”

Funding for the diploma is available to people who are unemployed, a UK resident for the past 3 years, aged 19 or over and live in the Tyneside region. Subsidised places are available for those that don’t qualify. To register interest or for more information please contact the Course Bookings team on: +44 (0)191 270 3220, UK Freephone: 0800 169 4426 or via email:[email protected]