CRAVEN College in Skipton has been ranked number one for the second year running for overall apprenticeship achievement in the north of England and number three in the whole of England out of approximately 230 other apprenticeship providers.

With 320 apprentices successfully completing last year, this is another outstanding achievement for a college already rated outstanding for its apprenticeship provision by Ofsted.

Craven College apprenticeships have been consistently in the top 10 providers for seven years and are well established as trailblazers when it comes to implementing new government policy and initiatives.

The team was among the first to implement the apprenticeship reforms and the new apprenticeship standards and although this has created challenges along the way, they have triumphantly maintained their position in the rankings.

Apprenticeships manager, Richard Swires said: “I’m delighted that despite the turbulence of the apprenticeship reforms we have been able to maintain our national position.

“It reflects the commitment and adaptability of all those involved in the delivery of apprenticeships and the strong support of our employers. We look forward to successfully supporting many more young people into training and employment as we approach the new academic year.”

Craven College apprenticeship provision has also come second countrywide in the FE Week Agriculture, Environmental and Animal Care Awards held at Birmingham.

Peter Watsons, Skipton, are big believers in apprenticeships. The company has had many over the years but this year is the first time it has had three at once.

Mick Peers from Peter Watsons said: “Apprenticeships help us bring on our trainees in our own way to meet our high standards. Our apprentices are all doing really well. They are keen, interested in the job and hard working.”

Andrew Cropley, principal of Craven College, added: “Our apprenticeships team, led by Richard Swires, is outstanding. As a relatively small college working with many small and medium sized businesses, this makes our achievement even greater. I am proud of the excellent support that our team give to both Apprentices and to the businesses themselves.’

Craven College apprenticeship provision is one of only a handful of colleges rated outstanding by Ofsted and the best performer in the North of England.