Home / News / “Taking on Apprentices is just good business sense” – industry-leading Lancashire engineering firm praises Themis

“Taking on Apprentices is just good business sense” – industry-leading Lancashire engineering firm praises Themis

An industry-expert Operations Director at a business which manufactures, delivers and installs technology around the world has visited Burnley College Sixth Form Centre to outline the advantages of starting your career as an Apprentice.

It’s the Year of the Themis Apprentice in 2022 and we’re showcasing everything amazing about the world of Apprenticeships.

We were joined by Ken O’Shea, of Altham Fabrications, who engineer industrial drying machines for Tek Dry –part of the Mayflower Group.

From their base in Blackburn, they engineer and ship huge drying machines – used in the food industry for French fries and cereal by global companies such as Kellogg’s and McCain but which can also be used for non-food purposes, too.

During the pandemic, they’ve seen business grow almost fourfold and have sent machines everywhere from Cumbria to Nigeria, Belgium to China.

Ken was invited in to share his expert knowledge with students on Vocational Engineering courses and showcase how a Themis Apprenticeship with Altham Fabrications could be the perfect route to a successful career.


“It makes good business sense – both taking on an Apprentice and becoming an Apprentice yourself.
“For the business it’s investing in the future. If we don’t invest in people now the skills gap in engineering will widen.”

Ken O’Shea

Operations Director, Altham Fabrications

Ken continues:

“It’s great for us as an employer to be able to recruit talented, passionate individuals at the start of their careers with whom we can share our knowledge and skills – alongside the Tutors and Trainers at Themis – to create the workforce of the future.

“And, if they stay with us at the end of their Apprenticeship, that’s fantastic: although if they move elsewhere, we know the engineering industry as a whole has become stronger and that’s good for everyone.

“To have a training provider like Themis to be able to support us and our Apprentices in their journeys is amazing.”

Altham Fabrications presently have 10 Apprenticeship vacancies available: eight roles as fabricator welders, with a mix of plate and sheet welding, one fitter and one machinist – who would be the very first machinist taken on by the company. To apply for one of these roles now – email [email protected]

For a full list of all our Themis Apprentice vacancies see www.burnley.ac.uk/themis-home/apprentice-vacancies



Jude Pearson

Former pupil at St John Fisher and Thomas More RC High School