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Apprentice Decorator of the Year: Crown celebrates Big 4-0

The Apprentice Decorator of the Year competition is back and bigger than ever, with the nation’s best budding painters and decorators from colleges across the UK taking part.

And it’s a landmark year for the competition’s sponsor Crown Paints as the company has now been supporting the contest for 40 years. The company has a full calendar of activity planned to mark the milestone, from special training days at Crown HQ to exclusive offers and deals via its network of 150 Crown Decorating Centres.

Apprentices can soon sign up to take part in one of 11 regional heats of the competition, which is organised by Worldskills and the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) and sponsored by Crown Paints, together with other industry leaders such as British Gypsum.

Despite its long history, the main element of the Apprentice Decorator of the Year competition has remained the same: testing apprentices on their decorating technique, accuracy and attention to detail. The designs are carefully created to test multiple skills and have changed over the years to mirror the fashions of the time or key events, such as last year’s design inspired by the 100 year anniversary of the end of World War 1.

Last year’s ‘gold’ winner, 22-year-old Aiden Dearie of City Building Glasgow’s Queenslie Training College, was chosen after a gruelling three-day challenge at the WorldSkills UK LIVE event at Birmingham’s NEC.

Apprentices can apply to take part in this year’s competition from 1st March to 5th April 2019, with the 11 regional heats set to begin at Belfast Metropolitan College on 22nd March, and conclude at South Devon College on 13thJune 2019. Any student or apprentice attending a recognised painting and decorating training course, run by an NVQ/SVQ accredited college, training provider or training scheme can enter.

The final will be held during this year’s WorldSkills UK LIVE, at Birmingham’s NEC over three days from 21st to 23rd November 2019. It is the largest multi-trade competition in the UK for construction trainees and apprentices and covers a range of skills and sectors from bricklaying and cabinet making to plastering and stonemasonry.

Commenting on the launch of the 2019 competition, Ben Deer, assistant judge and former Crown Paints Apprentice Decorator of the Year winner, said: “I’m looking forward to meeting the next crop of talented apprentice decorators over the course of the competition, and I’m excited to see what Crown has up its sleeve for the 40 year anniversary of its sponsorship.

“The Apprentice Decorator of the Year competition has a rich history of unearthing very skilled painters and decorators; for example, last year’s winner has already been offered a full-time job with City Building Glasgow as a result of winning the award.

“Taking part teaches you a lot about attention to detail, as well as working tidily and to a deadline – all vital skills for building a successful career in the future, so I’d urge any apprentice decorators who want to challenge themselves to sign up as soon as applications open!”

Applications for the special 40th anniversary Crown Trade Apprentice Decorator of the Year 2019 competition will be open from 1st March to 5th April 2019. For more information visit https://www.crowntrade.co.uk/skills-training/.You can also follow the competition throughout the year @CrownTradePaint on Twitter, CrownTradePaint on Facebook or Crown Paints on LinkedIn.

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