Apprentices pave the way

TAMESIDE Council’s latest quartet of apprentice paviours are continuing a fine tradition.

In fact, they represent one of the authority’s biggest and yet possibly least-known success stories.

Since the borough was created in 1974, the council has taken on mason paviour apprentices every year. They do a vital and skilled job, constructing and maintaining footpaths and pedestrian areas.

Over the last 45 years, more than 100 apprentice paviours have learned their trade with Tameside, and 38 of them are still with the authority. Two have become service managers, while others are supervisors and engineers.

The latest group comprises Jack Higham, from Dukinfield; Alex Harford, Denton; Ryan Jaffray; Bradley Yarr, Ashton and James Hopwood, Stalybridge, who are all keen to start learning the tricks or the trade.

Jack commented: “I enjoy working within a good team of lads who are taking the time to show me the ropes. I also like the variety of work we are currently undertaking.”

Alex said: “I’m really enjoying it as no two days are the same. I’m learning new skills and facing new challenges every day,” while James added: “I enjoy working at the council because there is a new task every day. Everybody looks out for you and shows you how things are done.”

Cllr Ged Cooney, Tameside Council’s executive member with responsibility for employment and skills, said: “I’m so happy to hear about these five lads and I’m sure they’ll go on to enjoy careers every bit as successful as their predecessors.

“Being a mason paviour is a good honest trade and will set them up with skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives. I wish them the very best of luck.

For information about apprenticeships with Tameside Council go online: or email

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