Francis Kirk Group Apprentice receives Star Accolade from Andy Burnham MP

Callum Cahill, an apprentice with leading engineering and fastening business Francis Kirk Group in Denton, has been recognised by the firm and The Apprentice Academy for excellent work.

He was given his Star Apprentice of the Month award by Andy Burnham MP for Leigh who was visiting the company last week. Mr Burnham met managers and staff at Francis Kirk as part of his bid to be GM Mayor next year and said he would be putting Apprenticeships high on the list of policy priorities.

He said: “Callum’s progress is testament to the contribution young people can make, given the right opportunities, and we are exploring how we can make that easier for people. We are looking at a variation of the highly successful UCAS university scheme. It works well for university entry, why not a version for Apprenticeships?”

According to Apprenticeship participation now stands at a record level – 871,800 people took up an Apprenticeship in the 2014 to 2015 academic year.

Managing Director of Francis Kirk Group, Tom Kirk, said Callum had made fantastic progress under the supervision of The Apprentice Academy and colleagues at the fifth generation firm.

“Everyone is growing in confidence around Apprenticeships and it is bearing fruit. Callum is managing over £300,000 worth of business, without any issues at all. He has become a valued member of the team.”


Callum’s success follows on from Matthew Cain, who also came in via The Apprentice Academy and is now a full-time employee. Tom again: “He blazed the trail, Callum has raised the bar again and we are all benefiting.”

James Clarke, founder of The Apprentice Academy said there was great reward in seeing young people fulfil their potential.

“It’s our passion. With the right level of support and training these young people can really thrive and Callum is a great example of that. It’s the best possible outcome for both the apprentice and the company.”

Over 90% of Apprentice Academy learners are offered permanent employment or progress into higher education at the end of the apprenticeship.

Eighteen months into his own experience at Francis Kirk Group Callum said: “Everyone has helped me a lot to get to this point. It’s nice to be recognised by the company and the Academy. I am optimistic about the future.”