Former SSI steelworkers are forging new careers

Former SSI workers, from left, Richard Southgate, Chris Vout, Matthew Howes and Nicholas List.
Former SSI workers, from left, Richard Southgate, Chris Vout, Matthew Howes and Nicholas List.
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A group of former steel workers are being helped on the road to a new career, thanks to Wearside training association Seta.

The four North East men – who lost their jobs when SSI closed its steelworks at Redcar – have successfully completed a 17th Edition IET Wiring Regulations course at Seta’s Washington site.

The closure of the SSI Redcar steelworks was a devastating blow for the North East, and it’s vital that its former staff are supported in their efforts to find new employment and build on the fantastic array of skills that they already have.

Robin Lockwood

The course provides industry standard training in electrical regulations and legislation, which will enable the men to fulfil a variety of roles in the electrical engineering sector.

Seta, a not-for-profit organisation, provides apprenticeships, traineeships and customer-focused, commercial training courses in subjects including mechanical engineering, maintenance engineering, welding, electrical engineering and health and safety.

Former SSI workers Chris Vout, Richard Southgate, Nicholas List and Matthew Howes undertook the course, which is City & Guilds accredited and runs over four days, with support from JobCentre Plus.

Chris Vout, who had worked at Redcar steelworks since 1977, said: “I’d previously worked as an electrician at the steelworks, before going into the management side, and wanted to freshen up my qualifications to enable me to work in industrial environments as an electrician.

“Completing the course at Seta means that I’m now up to date and can compete for jobs on a level playing field.”

Seta chief executive Robin Lockwood said: “The closure of the SSI Redcar steelworks was a devastating blow for the North East, and it’s vital that its former staff are supported in their efforts to find new employment and build on the fantastic array of skills that they already have.

“We’ve been delighted to help Chris, Richard, Nicholas and Matthew in acquiring new electrical skills through our course, and to play a part in opening up new opportunities for them.

“Our courses can be used to help individuals gain new expertise, which they may need in order to apply for new roles, or companies can train their staff with Seta in order to cross-skill and up-skill their workforces.”