Thirty years of experience working in mills has made Rosemary Storrie the ideal person to pass on her skills to modern apprentices.
Her role at House of Cheviot in Hawick and the experiences of an apprentice has been highlighted this week as part of Scottish Apprenticeship Week, organised by Skills Development Scotland (SDS).
“I’m a mender and have been working in knitwear for many years,” said Rosemary.
“It makes sense for the training to be done by me, but at first I did wonder what was is best way to do it.
“Then I spoke to Ian Smith who co-ordinates the programme and realised that the simplest way was to work through the basics and from there it became really simple to work out the programme.”
Hawick teenager Cassie Keegan has benefited from Rosemary’s training, being recruited as a modern apprentice three years ago.
Cassie’s parents worked in the textile industry but while she was at Hawick High School she didn’t believe she would find work in sewing, which she particularly enjoyed.
The 19-year-old said: “It was my sewing teacher who noticed that I was good at it and suggested contacting the House of Cheviot. I came in here straight from school and finished my modern apprenticeship last year.”
She added: “There’s a lot of unemployment around here, so having a trade like this is amazing – I love my job and knowing I’m trained in a way which means I’ll always have work is very satisfying.”
Rosemary is delighted to see young people in the area being given the opportunity to learn a trade.
She said: “They want to work and we want to help them.”
Scottish Apprenticeship Week is backed by businesses, training providers, colleges and apprentices from across Scotland to encourage more firms to take on apprentices.
SDS chief executive, Damien Yeates, said: “It’s never been more important to invest in skills for the future through work-based learning.
“Modern apprenticeships are good for business, good for individuals and good for the Scottish economy.”