Calling all apprentices!

apprenticeship competition

In Apprenticeships, Awards, Plumbing

HIP Magazine is on the hunt for the UK’s best plumbing apprentice and the CIPHE is on board as an official sponsor.

Now in its 12th year, the event is a fantastic opportunity for trainee plumbers to show off their skills and really make a name for themselves right at the beginning of their career. Regional heats are taking place in colleges across eight regions – including Scotland for the first time – giving apprentices from all over the UK the chance to take part. HIP Apprentice of the Year heats will take between January and April in the South West, South East, North West, North East, Midlands, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

The winners of each heat will go on to compete in the grand final, which takes place at the ADEY Innovation Training and Conference Centre in Cheltenham. There are incredible prizes worth up to £10,000 up for grabs, not to mention the prestige for both student and college that comes with winning a national competition.

Level 2 and 3 students (Level 6 and 7 in Scotland) are invited to enter the competition, during which they will be judged on a number of practical tasks by a panel of industry experts.

Last year’s winner was Lewis Blakely, a third-year apprentice at Coleg y Cymoedd. He said the best advice to those entering the competition in 2020 is to focus. “Take your time – there’s a lot of bends and measurements,” he said. “That’s what won it for me – taking a step back, looking at it, getting my levels right and double-checking my measurements before I soldered.”

Running alongside HIP Apprentice of the Year will be the popular Meet the Lecturer/Manufacturer series, which gives manufacturers the chance to update lecturers on the latest product innovations in the industry.

Celia Matthews, Managing Director at HIP Magazine, said: “It’s always a pleasure to see the next generation of plumbing and heating engineers show what they can do. The standard of competition is so high, and we can’t wait to see what the 2020 competition brings.”

Colin Yearp, Senior Technical Trainer at the competition’s Platinum Sponsor ADEY, said: “Grab the opportunity with both hands. The profile and knowledge you will gain from the experience will stand you in tremendous stead in your future career. The competition is miles ahead of anything I’ve seen.”

HIP Apprentice of the Year 2020, supported by the CIPHE, is also sponsored by Worcester Bosch (Gold), Pegler (Silver), Kingspan, Graham the Plumbers’ Merchant, Hotun by RA Tech, Mira Showers, WAGO, WaterSafe, Wavin and Wilo (all Bronze) and tool sponsor DeWalt.

For more information or to enter the competition, head to