Princess Anne visited recipients of her eponymous Princess Royal Training Award, assessed by the City & Guilds Group she serves as president, where she met apprentices and graduates to hear about their training. Received by Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Berkshire, James Puxley, who began proceedings by presenting Dr Ann Limb, chair and Kirstie Donnelly MBE, group chief executive of the City and Guilds of London Institute.
During her visit, the newly built computer-aided engineering classroom facilitated The Princess and Ms Donnelly participating in a round table discussion on ‘Females in Engineering’ with apprentice Faye Cooke and graduate engineers Jessica Matthews and Katie Parton.
Xtrac’s high precision bevel-gear cutting, and meticulous grinding operations, were demonstrated by apprentices Wesley Bloom and George Englefield, accompanied by machinists, team leaders and former apprentices, and apprentice manager.
The company’s president, Peter Digby, has long supported the development of its apprentice scheme. “Having twice received the Princess Royal Training Award, including in 2018, we were delighted to accommodate this visit following the recent official opening of our new apprenticeship academy,” said Digby.
Her Royal Highness also met in the Academy’s practical skills workshop with Xtrac’s professional training partners as well as meeting master coachmaker Sarah Sillars OBE and coachmaker John Blauth, from the Worshipful Company of Coachmaker and Harness Makers, who support apprentices with educational bursaries.
“Our training programmes strongly underpin the continual improvement of our capabilities […] it receives the highest priority throughout the business, supporting the company demand for a highly trained multi-skilled workforce to ensure our customers have the best products and services,” said Xtrac’s chief executive, Adrian Moore.