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Friday, 18 April 2014

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Apprentices who built house in Cumbria make TV debut

A TV show starring apprentices who were challenged to build a house with no mistakes in a year had its premiere in Carlisle yesterday.

House build apprentices photo
From left, Johnny Spooner, Johnny Cocker, Luke Parkes, Fred Story, Bradley Woodend, Dexter Routledge, Duncan Chisholm and Paul McGill

Apprentices who built and finished a four-bedroom detached house in Kells, Whitehaven, watched the ITV4 programme Rookie Builders before it airs on Tuesday night next week.

The apprentices, all aged between 17 and 27, built the £225,000 house on Magellan Park, on budget, with no mistakes and in only 12 months. It started in January and was completed ahead of schedule in October.

Fred Story, chief executive of Story Homes, said: “It is very satisfying to see the achievement of the young apprentices.

“We wanted to do something that was a bit different and shows confidence in young people and paints them in a positive light.

“This project had so many pluses and it was positive from start to finish. All of the apprentices were so enthusiastic.”

Mr Story said of the 23 that took part, 16 are still working for Story Homes or their sub contractors.

He said: “These figures tie in with national picture. Some young people come into the business and then decide it isn’t for them.

“It can be tough as they have to work in all kinds of weather. Some take to it like a duck to water and others don’t. We expect to see that.

“I think this a project that we can repeat but not necessarily for TV. As far as the apprentices go it has been a huge success.”

Mr Story said he will watch next week’s programme but does not want to see too much of himself in the show.

He said: “I think I make an appearance at the start and the finish.”

The recruits were from across west Cumbria, Carlisle, Penrith and Canonbie.

The series is narrated by Will Mellor and produced by Carlisle-based Brilliant Trees Media.

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