We caught up with Ashley Curtis who is currently completing his Level 2 Groundworks apprenticeship through Coyle and Balfour Beatty working on the UK’s railway network – an opportunity which will provide a strong foundation for his career going forward.
“I used to work as a mechanic but working outside appealed more to me, so I decided to try Groundworks as it is a similar skills set. The opportunity to work for Coyle is amazing as it is a large, national company which provides recruitment services to a number of sectors, so offers lots of room for progression. Coyle then outsources the workforce for Balfour Beatty, an international infrastructure group, which is who I’m contracted to”.
“Lots of my job involves travel as I work on projects in locations anywhere up to Birmingham. The work is varied: I work on railways, so tasks can include putting signs up, banks management, tunnel maintenance, cutting back bushes and clearing tracks, and taking down bridges. We’ve also been involved in maintaining the track at Dawlish Warren to ensure it doesn’t collapse again!
“In the future, I’d like to increase my ‘tickets’ which show you can carry out particular tasks safely and help you to take on more responsibility in a company. I’d also like to get my Controller of Site Safety Supervisor (COSS) award, which is a qualification with Network Rail for safe practice while working on railways – for example, we usually use a Line Block which stops trains travelling along the lines giving us a clear time frame to carry out the work.
“My advice to anyone thinking of doing an apprenticeship would be to be enthusiastic, patient and get your coursework done!”