‘Question Time’ for construction consortium
Mersey Gateway construction consortium Merseylink has been put under the spotlight as part of a special employment and enterprise event with local schools.
Project staff from the Mersey Gateway team were quizzed by local students in a ‘Question Time’ style session during the Halton Work Skills and Enterprise event at the Select Stadium in Widnes.
Around 120 students and teachers from 19 Halton schools attended the event, which was organised by Merseylink and Halton Borough Council’s Education Business Partnership (Halton EBP).
Industry experts from the team building the new Mersey Gateway bridge formed an expert panel and were questioned on a variety of topics.
The questions prepared by students focused on project benefits, environmental impact, employment and investment opportunities, engineering and construction.
Merseylink’s representatives included Jim Rice, senior operations manager, Victoria Pollard, environmental manager, Neil Wilcock, employment and skills coordinator, Bryn Roberts, compliance manager, and Rachel Moseley, senior estimator and supply chain manager.
Following the Question Time Activity young people were challenged to test their knowledge of work skills in Halton by competing to become Enterprise Game Champions. Weston Point Primary School were awarded the title of Enterprise Game Champions by Cllr Eddie Jones.
Neil Wilcock, Merseylink’s employment and skills coordinator, said: “It’s brilliant to see that local schools are engaged with the project and want to know more. This has been a great opportunity to hear from young people in Halton and discuss with them the positive impact the new bridge will have on their communities and the new opportunities that it will bring.”
The idea for the ‘Question Time’ style session originally came from Wade Deacon High School in Widnes through Merseylink’s Time Bank scheme and was incorporated into the partnership event.
Mike Roberts, assistant vice principal at Wade Deacon High School, said: “The Time Bank has provided a unique opportunity for our young people to get a genuine insight into engineering and the world of work in general.
“This has been invaluable in terms of increasing our students’ awareness of the different career paths available to them through engagement with such a high profile and hugely important construction project.
“It is this engagement with real people in the business that makes all the difference to our students and which excites and inspires them for the future.”
Jasmine Pritchard, a Year 7 pupil from Wade Deacon High School, said: “I was really impressed with the event. It taught us all about the environmental and economical facts behind the new bridge. I loved the experience, speaking to many professionals about the building of the new Mersey Gateway bridge. They inspired me to work hard and think about my future career.”