A 100-year-old family business has appointed its’ first ever female Engineering Apprentice.
Thomas Dudley Ltd recently announced Abigail Brown as their latest Toolroom Apprentice, who joins on her second year with Dudley College studying a Level 3 Tool & Die qualification with plans to progress onto HNC level 4.
Thomas Dudley provides unrivalled casting solutions underpinned by exceptional service.
Their award-winning foundry division encompasses two engineering foundries located in the West Midlands and are part of a group incorporating several businesses that focus on designing, developing, manufacturing and selling specific products to suit customer needs.
Other group companies include Tyde Fluid Movement specialising in plumbing products, McDonald Diecasting Ltd, Waterfit providing clean water utility fittings and plastic injection moulding specialists Rugby Plastics.
In her role as Toolmaker Apprentice, Abigail is already making punches on lathes and changing tool inserts whilst leading on a project for college analysing the optimum rearrangement of the Toolroom layout to accommodate new machinery.
When asked why she chose Engineering and an Apprenticeship, Abigail commented: “My brother is in the industry and inspired me to do something that a lot of females wouldn’t do. I want to show that women can be engineers and can excel within the industry.
“I enjoy being a Toolmaker as I find it intriguing and there is always something new to solve each day. I am also not afraid to get stuck in and get my hands dirty. I would 100% recommend engineering and Toolmaking to other females”.
Michele Bickerton, People & Development Director at Thomas Dudley comments: “We are delighted to welcome Abigail to the team as our latest Apprentice and look forward to seeing her grow and excel within Thomas Dudley. The appointment of our first ever female Engineering Apprentice now after so long without one is not for the want of trying and we hope that hearing Abigail’s story will inspire more young local females into the sector”.
Thomas Dudley Ltd were one of the first companies in the UK to receive the Make UK Engineering Apprenticeships: Employer Kitemark Accreditation in July this year as part of the Next Gen Makers Engineering Apprenticeships: Best Practice Programme, achieving the Gold standard ‘Excellent Employer’ status.
The Accreditation recognises exemplar employers of Engineering Apprentices following an annual benchmarking and accreditation process including satisfaction surveys of Engineering Apprentices, Training Provider feedback and company benchmarking of their Apprenticeship Scheme against industry best practice.