Carpentry apprentice from Shipston wins regional competition – and will now go on to compete on the national stage

He will now go on to represent Moreton Morrell College and the Midlands in the national WorldSkills UK competition.

George Clarke, 18, came first in the Skillbuild challenge for the Midlands – he studies at Moreton Morrell College.
George Clarke, 18, came first in the Skillbuild challenge for the Midlands – he studies at Moreton Morrell College.

A Shipston-on-Stour apprentice is a cut above the rest after claiming the top prize at a Midlands carpentry competition and will now go on to compete on the national stage.

George Clarke, 18, studies at Moreton Morrell College and came first in the Site Carpentry category in the SkillBuild challenge for the Midlands region.

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The second-year student is an apprentice at Steve Clarke Carpentry and Construction which he does alongside studying for his qualifications at the college.

He was competing in a category of 15 other carpenters and was tasked on the day with drawing, cutting, fixing and assembly of a complex roof.

George will now go on to represent Moreton Morrell College and the Midlands in the national WorldSkills UK competition.

“I really enjoyed the day. It was something a bit different and it was fun working under pressure with the time schedule,” said George.

“While I didn’t think I was going to win at the start, during the process I knew it was going quite well and thought I might have had a chance.

“I’ve always enjoyed being handy, helping out my dad and supporting his business. It seemed like the natural progression after school to take up an apprenticeship with his business.

“My tutor John introduced me to the competition and I decided to take it on. We did a few practicing sessions at college and then headed on to Moulton College for the challenge.

“I’m looking forward to the next stage now and I’m waiting for that information to come through from WorldSkills.”

College group WCG, which includes Moreton Morrell College, entered a team of seven in to the challenge and also saw Wade Montgomery place fourth in the Site Carpentry category.

The college entered learners into both the bricklaying and carpentry categories, with the bricklayer winners yet to be announced. Harry Green and Lucas MacDonald both competed in the bricklayer competition.

John Billings, carpentry tutor at WCG, said: "We are extremely proud of the construction team that represented WCG. The standard of work achieved was by far the highest I have seen at a WorldSkills competition and all of our learners did themselves proud."