Apprentice winner named

PUBLISHED: 14:42 16 May 2008 | UPDATED: 21:27 31 May 2010

Picture on server submitted – charlotte nelson.jpg. From L to R: Stewart White, Charlotte Nelson and Caroline Neville (Regional Director Learning and Skills Council, East of England).

Picture on server submitted - charlotte nelson.jpg. From L to R: Stewart White, Charlotte Nelson and Caroline Neville (Regional Director Learning and Skills Council, East of England).

SIR ALAN Sugar is still searching for his star apprentice, but a Saffron Walden company has already found theirs. Painter and decorator Charlotte Nelson, 20, has won the coveted title of Apprentice of the Year at the East of England Apprenticeship Awards.

SIR ALAN Sugar is still searching for his star apprentice, but a Saffron Walden company has already found theirs.

Painter and decorator Charlotte Nelson, 20, has won the coveted title of Apprentice of the Year at the East of England Apprenticeship Awards.

Delighted winner Charlotte, from Great Chesterford, said: "Since starting my apprenticeship I have gained much more confidence and I feel proud to have won this award, not only for me, but proud of the company I work for and the college for training me."

Beating strong competition from other candidates in the region, Charlotte scooped the top prize at a ceremony held at the Radisson SAS hotel on Friday May 9. She was presented her award by BBC presenter Stewart White.

Charlotte, who works for property maintenance firm Smallworx Ltd in Saffron Walden, is doing an apprenticeship at Cambridge Regional College, where she studies for one day a week.

"It is such a privilege to be recognised for all my hard work during the apprenticeship. I'm also the only girl out of nine men in a painting and decorating company so it's even nicer that as a girl my work was recognised," said Charlotte.

"I'm now looking forward to the national event in London. I'm excited about going but I'm also a little nervous!"

The East of England Apprenticeship Awards are organised and funded by the Learning and Skills Council (LSC).

Area director for the LSC Essex, Janice Logie, said: "Charlotte has shown great talent and determination to succeed in a trade which normally doesn't attract young women. I hope she feels proud to not only win this award but also to be upheld as an example to other young women and men who are passionate about succeeding against the odds in their chosen career or profession."

Charlotte has now been put forward to the national competition, where the winners will be announced on July 10.

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