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Enthusing apprentices and inspiring the next generation

Foundry Training Services Ltd (FTSL), keeps its apprentices on track and begins to work with local schools to encourage a new generation into the industry.

The current cohort of apprentices attending the National Foundry Training Centre, part of the Elite Centre for Manufacturing Skills (ECMS) in the UK, are progressing well through their apprenticeships and demonstrating signs that they have the potential to become the foundry technicians of the future, which the industry so badly needs. 

During their recent block of training at the centre, the focus was on the use of simulation in casting and the apprentices were fortunate to experience presentations from guest speakers from industry, thus benefiting from receiving the latest information from experts in the field. Staff from Maxima Engineering Ltd were generous with their time, leading tutored sessions on the use and application of casting simulation for filling, solidification and porosity simulation. It was clear that the apprentices found this very interesting – FTSL reports that they thoroughly enjoyed the week with some of them even arriving 45 minutes early each day.

The upcoming weeks will be packed full of various tasks centred around greensand control and moulding with greensand, as well as the creation of 2D and 3D drawings and further work on simulation of casting.

Casting the Future

The expertise, passion and dedication of the FTSL tutors spoke volumes when FTSL was approached by the Black Country Living Museum to support its Manufacturing at Work project with local schools. This was an exciting opportunity to demonstrate FTSL’s high level of expertise and present casting as a route to manufacture.

The two-day event involved 120 children, with an age range of seven to fifteen, attending to learn about various roles within the manufacturing industry with all the children coming from local mainstream and SEND schools.

The Casting the Future Foundry Kit was used to demonstrate casting and the casting process, and the children had the opportunity to cast their own spanner, anchor or mini anvil in lead-free pewter. 

Training and quality manager at FTSL, Michala French, said: “This was a very successful event which was thoroughly enjoyed, not only by the tutors from FTSL, but more importantly by the children and their teachers who were also encouraged to ‘have a go’.

“We hope that we have helped inspire some of the youngsters to consider a career in manufacturing and even in the foundry industry – perhaps some may be part of the future generation of apprentices through the National Foundry Training Centre.”

Contact: Michala French, National Foundry Training Centre, Tel: 0121 752 1814, email: [email protected]