Five new apprentices ‘knuckling down’ well with studies

Students at Whitby Fishing School, back row from left: Jack Cuffe, Craig Johnson, Charlie White; front: James Arro and Jackson Waite.
Students at Whitby Fishing School, back row from left: Jack Cuffe, Craig Johnson, Charlie White; front: James Arro and Jackson Waite.

Five students are well under way with their studies at Whitby Fishing School.

The young lads will knuckle down on the 12-month maritime apprenticeship programme.

The modern apprenticeship in Sea Fishing was launched in the UK in 2002, allowing students from all walks of life to embark on a career at sea in the UK fishing industry.

Andrew Hodgson, Business Development Consultant at Whitby Fishing Industry Training Centre, said: “We are delighted to start the new lads on the Sea Fishing apprenticeship programme.

“The fishing industry is hugely important to the North Yorkshire coast, so it’s crucial that we can provide the next generation of fishermen with the right skills, knowledge and practical experience to embark on a career at sea.”

This course is made up of a mixture of both academic and practical hands-on learning.

Each student is allocated a local fishing vessel and whilst onboard they build up a wealth of practical skills by utilising all the theory they have learnt from the classroom into practice. The vessel’s skipper then records their progress as they become more proficient.

The Fishing School is very appreciative to all the local skippers from the Whitby, Scarborough and Bridlington area for offering placements onboard their fishing vessels.

This demonstrates a commitment from the skippers by passing on their skills andknowledge to the next generation. Two retired skippers both teach students at the Fishing School the practical skills required to work on board a fishing vessel.

They said: “We are currently working with the students teaching the creating and repairing of fishing nets and lobster pots, which plays a large part of the course.

“We believe that this is a very effective way of learning, rather than just explaining to them how to mend the nets, they get the chance to try it out for themselves, thanks to the fantastic training facilities here in Whitby”.

After completing the apprenticeship programme, the students will qualify as deck hands. They will gain valuable Maritime Coastguard Agency and Sea Fish Industry Authority approved safety certificates, as well as building up a sea-going log which will stand them in good stead to work for years to come in the industry.