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Business / Local folk encouraged to apply for wind turbine apprenticeship programme

Emily van Tonder (left), school coordinator from Developing the Young Workforce Shetland and Julie Graham, Viking Energy Wind Farm community engagement manager. They are pictured in front of the Vestas turbines at Burradale wind farm.

WIND turbine manufacturer Vestas has teamed up with Viking Energy developers SSE Renewables to offer four places on its apprenticeship programme.

Successful candidates would learn the skills needed to become wind turbine technicians and ultimately have the opportunity to work at the Viking Wind Farm after construction is completed.

Vestas said that, following the recruitment of the first four apprentices this year, it would access the potential to extend the programme.

Last August it was confirmed that Vestas would supply the 103 turbines for the 443MW project – which is the manufacturer’s largest standalone onshore windfarm in Europe to date.

The company entered into a 30-year agreement to service the wind farm, with the ambition of establishing a Shetland-based service organisation.

Keith Wallace of Vestas said the company was “pleased to be offering this exciting opportunity for some keen and enthusiastic apprentices to join us on the journey to deliver and maintain Shetland and the UK’s clean energy future through wind power”.

“We want to hear from candidates in Shetland who really want to get involved and learn a lot about our industry, whilst developing a broad range of skills for a career in a growing, globally important industry,” he said.

Viking’s community engagement manager Julie Graham said it was an opportunity for four individuals to take “frontline roles in commissioning and maintaining wind turbines while making their lives in our wonderful islands”.

The government-funded Developing the Young Workforce Shetland’s schools coordinator Emily van Tonder said the organisation was “keen to assist young people in Shetland to apply for these apprenticeships in any way we can”.

“We’re currently running our DYW summer leavers programme, offering support with CV checks, mock interviews and e-learning opportunities and we’d be happy to help any young people who are interested in these excellent opportunities,” she said.

The closing date for applications for the apprenticeship places is 12 August.