South Bristol Jobs and Apprenticeships Fair returns

Main image: Bristol South MP Karin Smyth talking to apprentices at last year’s fair.

The South Bristol Jobs and Apprenticeships Fair is returning to Hengrove this February – giving job seekers and school leavers the chance to find out about available opportunities.

Held at the South Bristol Skills Academy on 27 February – the free event is being organised by Bristol South MP Karin Smyth along with City of Bristol College, Bristol City Council and the Department of Work and Pensions.

The fair will bring together local employers, training providers and apprenticeships organisations – including the NHS, Avon Fire and Rescue Service and the National Careers Service. 

This is the fourth year Karin Smyth has run the event with City of Bristol College, which follows National Apprenticeship Week on 3-9 February. 

With the percentage of 18-year-olds from Bristol South going to university among the lowest in the country – she has been trying to address the issue.

She says: “…Apprenticeships offer a fantastic route to work and qualifications, including university degrees. 

“We’ve had great feedback from previous fairs with people securing jobs and apprenticeships. The event is not just for school pupils but for their parents and grandparents as well as older people looking to re-enter the workplace or re-train.” 

Last year’s Jobs and Apprentices Fair at South Bristol Skills Academy.

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said: “…I am delighted that there are so many apprenticeship opportunities on offer across Bristol and that employers are committing to developing our city’s talent.” 

Burges Salmon apprentice Gareth Parfitt was at the 2019 fair talking to people about his experience of the scheme.

He said: “I found the university route to be really expensive and I’d had enough of reading from a textbook day-in, day-out; I wanted something that was a lot more practical so decided that an apprenticeship was way better for me. 

“The practical side coupled with study works really well – I go to university on a Monday and on a Tuesday, whatever I’ve learnt, I go to work and put straight into practice… If I pass all my exams, I should come out as a qualified solicitor without the debt of university.” 

The South Bristol Jobs and Apprentices Fair takes place at the South Bristol Skills Academy in Hengrove on Thursday 27 February from 11am-3pm.