SipBuild UK, the country’s leading supplier of Structural Insulated Panel buildings, has taken on a 17-year old joinery and carpentry apprentice who is studying at Leeds College of Building.

Jake Roche joined SipBuild UK in September after securing five GCSE’s, including maths and business studies, and is undertaking a two-year National Vocational Qualification in joinery and carpentry level one and two.

SipBuild UK commercial director Chris Duckworth said: “The construction industry has been suffering from a skills shortage for a long time and it’s only by investing in our young people that we’ll ensure a thriving industry in the future.

“It’s great to have Jake on board learning on the job and working towards a recognisable qualification with Leeds College of Building.”

Mr Roche said: “It’s a big change moving from school into work which is giving me a taste of real life and independence. I chose to go down the vocational qualification route because I think having a skill that people value and a trade will mean that I’m starting my career in the construction industry on a sound footing.”

At college, which he attends one day a week during term time, Mr Roche is learning about different joints and making frames. At the SipBuild UK headquarters in Castleford Mr Roche is involved in building timber frame structures and cutting Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) to the relevant size so they can be constructed on site.

SipBuild UK works with architects, contractors and self-builders to specify, deliver and construct SIP structures for the public sector and people who are building their own homes.