He began his career in the oil and gas industry and now Shaun Read is using SCORE grant funding to keep offshore workers in the region fully trained up.
Torque Tech Training Services (3TS) in Lowestoft received £24,000 through Supply Chain innovation for Offshore Renewable Energy – a £6million grant fund and support programme for small and medium-sized companies developing new ways of working or innovative technologies in offshore renewable energy.
The funding helped develop classrooms and a workshop where offshore workers can receive both the theory and hands-on training the industry now requires.
As a result, companies in the region’s supply chain can access training locally rather than having to bring in trainers from Aberdeen or elsewhere, cutting down on accommodation and travel costs.
And those looking for work offshore can get the training they now need to work on rigs.
“To go offshore, you have to have survival training and a medical, and also S-Cape and emergency descent, which is one of the ones we do,” says Shaun, who started out as an apprentice with a shipbuilding firm in Lowestoft before moving into the oil and gas sector.
“If you are using a wrench or a hydraulically-powered wrench you need to be certified. The industry now requires not only basic training, which obviously we deliver, but also TMJI (Trade Mechanical Joint Integrity), which is the trade test.
“The basic MJI lasts for one year and if they have had enough experience and their logbooks have been completed, they can come back and sit the trade test. If they pass that, they don’t need recertifying for three years.
“There is no one else in Lowestoft offering this service and we are small enough that we can train one person if needs be and cope with groups. We can be flexible and provide a better service than has been available in the area before.”
As well as the funding from SCORE being invested in the local area, the additional training centre will boost the employability of offshore workers at a promising time for the oil and gas sector.
SCORE will be among the exhibitors at the Southern North Sea (SNS) Conference at the Norfolk Showground, which runs tomorrow (Wednesday) and Thursday.
Shaun said: “The industry is finding there is a shortage of the right sort of people. With the downturn, people have gone out of oil and gas and found more permanent roles. But in the last few months it’s all seeming quite positive.
“Where before you had a bolter or a pumper, but now if you can’t do both you are going to struggle to get work. The industry is going for multi-skilled operatives and we can help with that.”
Photo: TMS Media.
Shaun Read (left), of Torque Technologies, with trainers Lorna White and Jamie Hewitt.
Note to editors:
SCORE offers grants to help companies across England to develop new products, processes and ideas which bring economic benefit to the East of England.
Grants are available to start-up and established companies for up to 40% of eligible costs or £50,000, whichever is the lower, with a minimum grant of £2,500.
The programme is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and is open to companies with fewer than 250 employees and an annual turnover of less than 50 million euros.
The funding is designed to help companies in a wide range of areas, including research and development, collaboration with universities and research bodies, securing patents, acquiring specialist equipment or services and investigating the commercial viability of processes and technologies.
Companies can also access up to 12hrs of subsidised business support from regional enterprise agency Nwes to help grow and develop their business.
The current programme is delivered by Nwes, the largest enterprise agency in the UK and in partnership with, energy industry experts Nautilus Associates and the national Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult centre.
To find out more about SCORE grants and eligibility, visit:
Media Contact: Produced and distributed on behalf of SCORE by TMS Media.