ENGINEERING firm Tharsus has teamed up with the Blyth Tall Ships project to create a course to help bridge the skills gap.
The Tharsus Factor has been a way for the Blyth firm Tharsus to kick-start careers for young people in the engineering industry, which has seen a fall-back in apprentices over recent years.
The Blyth Tall Ships project uses historic boat-building techniques and has plans to follow in the footsteps, two centuries ago, of Captain William Smith who discovered the Antarctic landmass by building a ship in Blyth and sailing around Cape Horn.
The Tharsus Factor started with 12 unemployed individuals aged 18 to 40, who all demonstrated an interest in welding.
Tharsus chief executive Brian Palmer said: “This kind of collaboration is a win-win situation for everyone involved.
“Welders are in short supply in the North East and to have a group of local people with a genuine passion for engineering and welding is really exciting for us.”
Retired Tharsus employee Keith Cameron supported the teenagers through Level 1 NVQ module in welding and the company funded training for those candidates and then offered three of them a work placement.