Prime Minister David Cameron has praised the work of Bury St Edmunds-based pub group Greene King for its commitment to training apprentices.
The company, which currently has 3,300 apprentices, has been recognised by the government for its commitment to apprenticeships.
The praise came with an invitation to attend a reception at 10 Downing Street for Greene King chief executive Rooney Anand and two of the firm’s apprentices, Mark Robinson and Jenna Stewart, along with leaders of other national companies.
The event, hosted by Mr Cameron and Business Secretary Sajid Javid, was used to launch the government’s Apprenticeship Delivery Board.
At the reception, Mr Anand announced that Greene King had delivered on its pledge, made during National Apprenticeship Week 2015, to create 2,000 more apprenticeships within a year two months ahead of schedule.
Mr Anand said: “We are really proud of our apprenticeship programme and passionate about supporting our employees with their career development at Greene King.
We are passionate about supporting our employees with their career development at Greene King.Rooney Anand, chief executive
“Following our acquisition of Spirit Pub Company last year, we are now working to increase the number of qualifications available to our 42,000 team members.
“There is real enthusiasm for our apprenticeship programme and not only do we want to ensure the apprentice’s experience is a valuable one, we want to continue to improve the quality and opportunities for those who commit to the 12 month programmes.”
Apprentice Mark Robinson (25) an assistant manager and on a Level 4 leadership and management apprenticeship, said: “Some of the best things I have got from it are the networking and being able to understand behaviours and learning patterns in people.”
“It has really developed me in becoming a leader, rather than a manager.”
Jenna Stewart (22) a supervisor at a busy pub,e said: “Apprenticeships have helped me learn new skills, gain confidence and given me the motivation to do more.”
Greene King offers bespoke apprenticeships across its business and brands and is contributing towards the government’s target of three million by 2020.
Those in retail are able to achieve qualifications from Level 2 to 4 including food production and cooking, professional cookery and management.