Graham Construction tops out £20m Glasgow development
The future of Graham Construction’s workforce helped mark a significant milestone in the development of a £20.2 million student accommodation building on Bath Street in Glasgow.
Seven of the firm’s young apprentices gathered on the roof of the 14 floor project as part of the topping out ceremony for the purpose-built development, taking place during Scottish Apprenticeship Week.
All the apprentices pictured are currently enrolled in the Graham Academy, an initiative launched by the firm to help combat the skills shortage within the industry. The scheme sees young employees take on structured learning courses, which offer nationally-recognised qualifications alongside paid work experience and permanent employment. The entry level programme allows young people to pursue a career in construction.
Technical Apprentice, Reiss Fleming, 17, laid the final section of cement on the project, which is due for completion in August. Reiss has been employed by Graham for more than two-years, initially on work experience before being taken on as a full-time apprentice in civil engineering. There are currently 100 young people like Reiss within Graham Construction, on the programme.
Gary Holmes, regional director of Graham Construction, said: “Young people represent the future of the industry and we’re committed in helping equip them for this future, through work placements, traineeships and apprenticeship schemes.
“Reiss and the rest of the young people employed at Graham play a vital role within our organisation in contributing to current projects across the country, while ensuring we have the talent in place to grow the company in the future.”
Reiss was joined by trainees and apprentices, Thomas McGoran, Kayleigh Murdoch, Liam McMillan, Andrew Coyle, Brian Hepburn and Shams Rahimi.
Reiss said: “Being taken on as a full-time apprentice at Graham Construction has been an excellent experience. The Graham Academy has been extremely supportive in giving me advice and expert training as I work towards the qualifications I need to become a civil engineer within the company.”
The Bath Street student development, located on the junction with Pitt Street, will deliver 330 single-occupancy studio rooms in addition to a large ground-floor retail-space, and basement storage space.
The building is positioned on the site of the former A-Listed Elgin Place Congregational Church - an iconic landmark in the city – which was home to a number of well-known nightclubs, including ‘Shack’ and ‘Trash’.
Graham employs over 300 people in Scotland and has managed over 150 apprenticeships.
Graham Construction is a member of the 5% Club, made up of companies committed to ensuring at least 5% of their workforce over the next five years is comprised of young people on structured learning schemes.
However, it goes far beyond this commitment - with 12% of the current workforce in these schemes.