MOODY apprentice

Moody Logistics has proved that apprenticeships can be successfully used to train HGV drivers after training up former warehouseman Alex Skelton to a Category C truck driver.

Twenty two-year-old Skelton started work in the Cramlington firm's distribution depot last September as part of its warehouse-to-wheels apprenticeship programme and has now gained his HGV licence after training with Tyneside Training Services (TTS), part of Gateshead College Group.

Moody Logistics was one of the founders of TTS in the 1960s; it was sold to Gateshead College in 2012.

The family-run firm is now recruiting another driver apprentice, advertising the position with no upper age limit.

Two previous apprentices, Dean Dodd and Steven Hanson, who completed their apprenticeships as HGV drivers with Moody Logistics, have remained with the company and have progressed from Category C to C+E drivers.

Richard Moody, operations director of Moody Logistics, said: “There is an estimated 60,000 shortfall of qualified HGV drivers nationwide and the warehouse-to-wheels initiative is one way that haulage companies can solve their recruitment needs.

“Alex has, through his work in the warehouse, gained a much more in-depth knowledge of the logistics business. He has displayed an excellent attitude throughout and was such a success that we have decided to recruit another driver apprentice.

“The average age of a trucker is more than 50, so it’s vital to bring new people into the industry as any continued driver shortage affects this country’s economic fortunes by restricting its ability to move goods.”

Skelton said: “The programme has been a very worthwhile experience which, thanks to the support of Moody Logistics, has put me on the road to a new and exciting career.”