Established in 2007, Trades Training School has had its challenges (including a major recession and lockdown) but the team says it has plenty to celebrate.
Director Antony O’Neil reflects on the company’s growth. “In the beginning our training was focused on wall and floor tiling then quickly expanded to cover plumbing and plastering. Tiling is still my personal passion! I’m proud of our reputation for delivering high quality courses with a strong emphasis on background preparation (today in the centre, we are covering rendering with BAL quickset render).
“Early on, we gained centre recognition from City & Guilds and SQA. It was important for us to work with those awarding bodies, so our students know our training meets high standards and they can obtain a nationally recognised qualification from us.”
Courses are taught using BAL training materials and high-spec equipment, the school says. There is a maximum of five students on each course, enabling lots of individual time with the instructor. Training is both informative and relaxed – the company says – it’s important that students actually enjoy their course!
“Our team has grown in size but we remain close knit and passionate about our business,” O’Neil continues. “We all work hard to ensure our students have the best possible experience. Our tutors are both qualified assessors and highly experienced in their field. They work in the industry and share that first-hand knowledge with our students.
“Over the years we’ve built up a fantastic community and our after-course support is something I’m most proud of. Our students can join our support groups both on WhatsApp and a dedicated Facebook page. In keeping with our relaxed culture these are aptly named TileJunkies, PlasterMinds and LeakGeeks! Students have instant access to support from a close network of tutors and experienced trades men and women.
“Our TileJunkies group currently has over 100 active tilers. It’s amazing to see this community share problems and advice on a daily basis. We’re really grateful to our network of businesses who support new tilers ‘on the job’, providing work experience and mentoring, especially Apex Tiling and Evolution Tiling.”
The organisation has worked closely with BAL Adhesives, which provides technical support and the professional resources needed to deliver the training. This month, the centre had a level compound demo delivered by BAL. It also held trade events in collaboration with Lithofin, Schluter Systems and Sigma. O’Neil says: “A huge thank you to all who have partnered with us.”
“With instructor Mathew Mchale boxing in the Commonwealth games in August, we will be cheering him on for Gold! Our newest team member Immy has started his Assessor award, adding another qualified instructor to the team.
“We will continue to grow and develop to ensure we are providing the very best training and support to our students. Personally, I’m looking forward to the next 15 years!”