Apprenticeships: Help To Get On Ladder

THE Ladder for the Black Country is the leading multi-organisation champion for apprenticeships in the Black Country. 

Since its launch in 2014 and working with employers, training providers and individuals, it promotes the apprenticeship brand while improving skills and employment opportunities across the region. 

Launched in 2014, the Ladder for the Black Country has helped thousands of people into work, got hundreds of employers engaged with apprenticeships and provided expert support for training providers, as well as schools and colleges.

The Ladder is able to offer advice to young people who are looking to take their first step onto the Ladder with an apprenticeship. Working with employers and a network of approved training providers, which include independent training providers, colleges and universities, it is able to offer impartial advice and support to help you make an informed decision about what to do next. 

Throughout the Black Country there are currently thousands of apprenticeship vacancies giving you the opportunity to work in many different types of companies such as engineering, healthcare, administration, accounting, IT, construction, plumbing, electrical, leather and many more… 


If you would like help and support securing you future career, email apprenticeships@ , call 03332 409 699 or go to the website at 

Award-Winning Apprentice: Hannah Scoffham

Walsall-born Hannah Scoffham, who works for Ideal & WRS Company, recently won Young Leather Craftsperson of the Year.


She completed a Level 2 Leather Craftmanship apprenticeship and loved the mix of work experience, developing new skills and meeting new people. She said: “I loved being able to go to the training provider each week and talk to people my own age.”


When she left school, she started to go into the factory where her grandfather Alf, a master saddler, worked on his own making the military saddles for the Household Cavalry. She became fascinated by the work and the tools and Alf encouraged her interest.


Ideal asked her if she would like to work in the workshop and she jumped at the chance. She now makes the military saddles alongside her grandfather.


Her employers wanted her to have some formal recognition of her learning and so Hannah became the first Walsall apprentice enrolled on the Leather Craftsperson apprenticeship standard.


She juggles work with caring for her younger brother and has recently passed her driving test.


The Ideal & WRS Company is one of the largest manufacturers of all leather saddles on wooden saddle trees in the world, offering an extensive range of dressage, show jumping, eventing and showing styles.


It has been based in Walsall for 30 years. 


The Leather Skills Centre at The Bridge is open to year 10 and 11 pupils from schools to try leatherwork and learn about apprenticeships and career opportunities available in the sector.


The training workshop offers a wide range of saddlery and leather-goods courses including the Level 2 Leather Craftsperson and the Level 3 Bespoke Saddler apprenticeships.


The centre aims to build on the leather heritage of the town by offering training to help create jobs and supporting the high-quality leather businesses upon which Walsall’s reputation has been based for centuries.