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1st April 2021



Ainscough Crane Hire has reiterated its commitment to supporting the next generation of crane professionals by welcoming the debut intake of its first-ever crane operator apprenticeship programme.

The three-year course will offer participants a gateway into the crane industry while they are supported by Ainscough in gaining the required skills and qualifications. The new cohort will receive first-class training, with Ainscough’s Make the Safe Choice ethos being core to each stage of development, and receive a competitive rate of apprentice pay with attractive benefits and holiday packages.

In the first year, the apprentices will gain their Slinger/Signaller qualification before going on to achieve their HGV Class 2 licence and Mobile Crane Operator qualification over the three year period. By this time, each person who has completed the course will be a fully qualified blue card crane operator.

While training as a Slinger/Signaller in the initial 12 months, the apprentices will be assigned an experienced lift supervisor as a mentor and visit sites with a Contract Lift team.

The apprentices will be based at 11 different Ainscough operating centres across the country – from Stockton to West London.

Darren Thompson, Ainscough Crane Hire’s head of HR said: “The past year has been very difficult for young people, and therefore it’s been so cheering to see the enthusiasm and eagerness to learn that our first-ever crane operator apprentices have shown at our induction sessions.

“It’s an incredibly exciting time to join the crane industry. Ainscough is currently working on both HS2 and Hinkley Point C – two of the largest infrastructure projects the UK has ever seen. Additionally, we’re proud to continue to support our clients in the construction sector on the commercial and residential developments that will play a part in revitalising the economy in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as clean energy schemes that will help protect our planet for future generations.

“Through hard work, the newest members of the Ainscough team will find themselves delivering vital lifts on schemes like these, in addition to the smaller jobs we undertake on a daily basis that help keep our country running. At Ainscough, they will be taught the absolute importance of safety and receive all the training and support required to develop a long and rewarding career in the crane industry.

“Our intake has a wide geographic spread, with some becoming the second generation of their family to work at Ainscough. It’s also pleasing that two of the recruits are female. The crane industry is excessively male-dominated and in particular, there is a lack of diversity in crane operators. While that isn’t going to change overnight, we’re committed to doing all we can to promote our industry as a good career choice for women.

“To all our new apprentices – we look forward to working with you and helping you develop the skills and experience needed to be a successful crane operator. Welcome aboard and good luck!”

Kelsey Binding, who will undertake training at Ainscough’s Manchester depot, said: “I’m really excited to be one of Ainscough’s first-ever crane operator apprentices. The company has a brilliant reputation and it will be a great experience for me to learn from some of the best people in the business. This is an amazing opportunity for me to begin my career in the crane industry and I can’t wait to get started.”

To find out more about apprenticeship opportunities at Ainscough, please visit

Left to right: Yolanda Price, Jamie Middleton, Kieran Visser, James Goodman, Kelsey Binding, Harry Wilson, Jonathan Horner, William Eades, Joseph Cook, Andrew Bowing, Reece Wood, Sam Spaull, Charlie Skelding & Conner Foster

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