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Sherford Skills Centre

16 November 2021 | College News

Sherford is one of the biggest, most exciting new developments in the South West. And you can be a part of creating it. We’re working with the Sherford Consortium of national homebuilders to offer on-the-job training to our students. From plastering to plumbing, if you’re interested in construction, there are some fantastic opportunities for you to get involved with.

Getting trained in construction skills at Sherford could even lead to you landing a permanent job. So whether you’re looking for your first adventure after school, or want a whole new career change, this is your chance to discover what you can do.

The Sherford Consortium is committed to strengthening the region’s business, economic and employment landscape, including by creating a legacy by nurturing local talent and the next generation of construction workers. The Sherford Skills Training Scheme offers onsite training, work experience and long-term employment opportunities during every phase of the town’s construction.

You can register your interest in Sherford training and employment opportunities at, or find out about the paid construction Apprenticeships we can offer you directly.

If you just want a chat about how you could be a part of building Sherford, Steve Ricketts is the man to talk to, so drop him an e-mail at or call 01752 305026.

Building a New Future with Sherford Skills Centre

A new partnership has been forged between City College Plymouth and Building Heroes, to deliver construction skills courses at a specialist training centre at Sherford, to help service leavers and veterans retrain, gain valuable skills, and access new careers in an industry crying out for new talent.
Building Heroes is a national charity that supports veterans, service leavers and direct family
members, offering practical skills courses to those interested in a career in construction. Delivering accredited courses across the UK, its first course with Sherford Skills Training Scheme took place last year and was the first Building Heroes course to be conducted on a live construction site and not in a purely educational setting.
A full programme of nine courses are planned across the current and next academic years, with the first underway this month. Currently, 12 military personnel – all in a resettlement  period prior to leaving the armed forces – are on-site and taking part in the fully-funded Building Heroes construction skills course, with the aim of seeking future careers in construction.
During each five-week programme, learners will be tutored by education partner City College Plymouth, with hands-on tuition in various areas of construction and safety, resulting in a Level 1 Construction Skills and Health and Safety qualification. They will also benefit from mentoring and gain insights into the industry from Sherford’s housebuilders and contractors. Participants are even offered support in finding employment through regular networking events.
The courses will take place at Sherford in its revolutionary £370,000 Skills Training Centre, which was developed to address the region’s skills shortage. It was funded by the Sherford Consortium – a partnership between Taylor Wimpey and Vistry Partnerships – and opened its doors in 2018. The centre has supported the training and development of hundreds of apprentices and armed service leavers, helped create over 280 jobs, and enabled users to retrain and upskill across trades.
Steven Ricketts, Sherford Skills Training Scheme Coordinator, said, “This new partnership will have a positive impact on the lives of our learners, as well as the local construction industry. More than half of those we teach are former members of the armed forces, and it is an honour to help them gain new skills and pursue an exciting new career path. We now have two major flagship programmes on offer – Building Heroes and CITB Onsite Experience – and the bigger picture is that, by providing this training, we will boost employment opportunities and economic growth.
Karen Jefford, Chief Operations Officer of Building Heroes, said: “We are thrilled to be working with skilled staff at City College Plymouth and Sherford Skills Training Scheme to deliver this programme in Plymouth. It makes perfect sense for our charity to provide support in a city that is synonymous with the Royal Navy.
“We are also excited to be delivering on a live construction site, with all the potential employment opportunities and experience that can offer.”

Future of Sherford Skills Training Centre secured

The future of Sherford Skills Training Centre has been secured thanks to recent funding from the Construction Industry Trade Board (CITB). Awarded for the commitment to improving the industry’s current skills shortage, the skills centre is now set to continue offering specialist training to those in the South West and beyond.

The funding has been granted for an ‘Onsite Experience Project’ from 2021 to 2023. It will enable the town’s dedicated skills centre to build a lasting legacy for the region’s construction industry by filling workforce gaps and providing new employment opportunities. Training programmes and on-site work experience will develop skills in drylining, plastering, rendering and painting – delivered by education partner City College Plymouth.

The creation of the £370,000 centre and the Sherford Skills Training Scheme was funded by the Sherford Consortium – a partnership between Taylor Wimpey and Vistry Partnerships, which includes Linden Homes and Bovis Homes. Opening its doors in 2018, the training centre has supported the training and development of over 100 apprentices, supported armed service leavers, helped create over 280 jobs, and offered its users the opportunity to retrain and upskill across trades.

Learning professional quality skills, course participants benefit from the guidance of expert mentors, as well as gaining insights into the industry from Sherford’s award-winning housebuilders and team of local contractors. From aiding new entrants with Apprenticeship training, to dedicated courses for veterans, the skills centre opens doors of opportunity to anyone looking to begin a career in construction.

Guided through every stage, participants are even offered support in finding employment, with networking events a part of every course. A valuable chance to meet and speak with leading local employers, the course has helped many participants find their first step towards employment. Many standout students have been offered jobs with Sherford’s local contractors, giving them a chance to share their passion and specialist skills to contribute to this new community.

Bradley Davison, Managing Director of Vistry Partnerships South West, part of the Sherford Consortium, said:  “We are dedicated to supporting skills and training, so we are extremely proud that Sherford Skills Training Centre has been recognised for the positive opportunities it provides. We are completely committed to supporting the region and its construction industry – and we are also deeply passionate about helping people pursue a rewarding career.”

Steven Ricketts, Sherford Skills Training Scheme Coordinator, added: “We are over-the-moon to have received CITB funding, so that we can continue to offer specialist training and support to the South West right here at Sherford. It is so rewarding to see so many of our graduates go on to find their dream job and to know that, in return, they are strengthening the future of the industry and having a positive impact on the region.”

For more information about the Sherford Skills Training Scheme or Sherford Skills Training Centre, please contact: Steve Ricketts, Sherford Skills & Training Co-ordinator, on 07812732403 or e-mail

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