Cammell Laird seeking 50 new apprentices

Merseyside shipyard Cammell Laird begins recruitment process as it looks to hire 50 engineering apprentices as part of its 2024 intake. Tony McDonough reports

Cammell Laird
Apprentices at Merseyside shipyard Cammell Laird train for four years


Birkenhead shipyard Cammell Laird is inviting applications for its 2024 apprentice intake,

It is seeking to take on 50 new trainees across a number of different trades. They include welders, platers, riggers, mech fitters, pipefitters, machinists and shipwrights. 

Apprenticeships will last for four year and trainees will be based at the Engineering College, next door to the shipyard, for the first year.

Cammell Laird said: “With promising opportunities for progression, Cammell Laird has worked with The Engineering College for more than 20 years to train apprentices as an essential part of the workforce.

“If you are interested in pursuing an exciting engineering career, then apply to be an apprentice in the new 2024 cohort.”

For more information, or to apply for one of the places, click here.

In February Kirsten Blood, a ship manager at the yard, addressed a Mersey Maritime event and told the audience how she started her working life at the company as an apprentice 14 years ago.

She offered the remarkable statistic that up to 80% of current employees at Cammell Laird started off as apprentices, including the current managing director Mike Hill.

“Looking back as a 16-year old I really didn’t know what I wanted to do… I am a creative thinker and I like problem-solving,” she said. “That was my route onto thinking about engineering and that is what led me to The Engineering College.

“Engineering was completely new to me at 16/17. I was shown a picture of an adjustable spanner and I had no idea what it was. I just got stuck into learning the trade and have loved every minute of it.


Cammell Laird
Kirsten Blood, a ship mananger at Cammell Laird, started her career as an apprentice


“When I applied there was only one other female apprentice so I am grateful to her for breaking that mold. We were a little duo for a while. Since then there have been a few more females come through, which is great.

“I did a few career days where I went into school and it is nice to see more girls coming through – but we definitely need to see more.”

In April Cammell Laird reported it had enjoyed one of its busiest-ever starts to a year. It has seen multiple vessels in its four dry docks in the first quarter of 2024.

Since the start of 2024, the yard has welcomed three Stena Line vessels to its facility – Stena EddaStena Embla and Stena Adventurer. Stena Edda and Stena Embla provide a key daily route between the Mersey and Belfast.

February saw Cammell Laird’s first double docking of 2024 – with CalMac Ferries Hebrides and Mersey Ferries’ Royal Iris simultaneously undergoing their programme of ship repair works in number 6 dock.

In January the business, part of the UK-wide APCL Group, revealed it had returned to profit after several years of losses in what were described as ‘some of the most challenging times in its history’.

It reported a 30% surge in revenues to £122.7m and a return to profit for the 12 months to April 1, 2023. Pre-tax profit for the year came in at £3.7m, a big improvement on the £4.5m loss reported in the previous year.

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