A Liberal Democrat MP has spent today (Friday, August 23) rolling up his sleeves and seeing just exactly what local apprentices do in his Norwich constituency.

Simon Wright, who represents Norwich South, has spent the day with local apprentice bricklayers with the construction firm CTS. As part of his day on the job, Wright has been learning the very basics of quality bricklaying and has been speaking to the young apprentices, as well as to their supervisors, to learn just why apprenticeships are so appropriate.

Wright, who has long been campaigning to increase the number of employers in his constituency who employ apprentices, said that the schemes help to drive down youth unemployment and enhance the much-needed skilled workforce.

He said, “Apprenticeships are hugely important, particularly for young people looking to gain technical skills and experience, so I’m really excited at the opportunity to meet some apprentices in Norwich and learn more about the work they do.”

The MP has previously voiced his support for apprenticeship schemes across a wide range of disciplines, not just in construction but in areas such as food and agriculture, which are particularly necessary in his East Anglian constituency.

In April he endorsed the official launch of the EDGE Apprenticeships in Food and Farming scheme, which is aimed specifically at the East of England’s agricultural sector. The EDGE programme is led by employers and is aimed at attracting the best young people to the sector, organising their training and simplifying the process through which businesses can get involved and take on an apprentice.

Speaking at the launch of the EDGE Apprentices, Mr Wright said that the initiative was a clear example of how workforces need to be nurtured and encouraged by the their employers. He said, “This scheme will make a real difference for young people, equipping them with the essential skills, training and knowledge needed to succeed in the modern world of agriculture.”