With 2016 fast approaching, now is the perfect time to consider a career change or think about learning some new skills. If you're looking for an area of industry that offers a steady stream of work and income, then why not train to become a plumber?

At Access Training, we offer a range of plumbing courses, to suit both beginners as well as experienced plumbers:

  • Our Essential Plumbing Course is great for people who want to learn the basics of the trade, setting a foundation on which to build a portfolio of plumbing skills in order to go on to further training. 
  • For a combination of practical and technical plumbing knowledge, our Professional Plumbing Course will equip you with all the skills you need to become a professional plumber. By the end of the course, you will have achieved the qualifications necessary to start your career in plumbing. While this course is designed with beginners in mind, it would also suit experienced candidates looking to update their skills.
  • Candidates who are looking to become professional plumbers/heating engineers should consider our Premier Plumbing Course, which will allow you to also gain multiple gas and electrical qualifications, enabling you to join the Gas Safe Register and take on a wider variety of jobs.
If you're interested in enrolling on one of our courses or finding out more information, please feel free to get in touch with us today.

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electrical courses

Job loss is, sadly, a very common occurrence in the United Kingdom these days. Austerity and budget cuts have put hundreds of thousands of people out of work in recent years; a This is Money article published in 2012 suggests that, between May 2010 and November 2012, almost 660,00 jobs were lost in the public sector alone, and this regrettable trend seems to be alive and well in 2015. The British steel industry, for example, has been in the headlines recently, with one report from the Guardian indicating that 1 in 6 steel workers is now "facing the axe".

However, several other news reports have proved that it is possible to bounce back from job loss and find lucrative new work elsewhere. Earlier this week, the Sunderland Echo published a story about four men who recently found themselves unemployed when the SSI steelworks in Redcar closed down; the closure came as a "devastating blow" to Chris, Richard, Nicholas and Matthew, but happily, they have since succeeded in completing a 17th Edition Wiring Regulations course and are now en route to their new careers as professional electricians.

And this is just one such story. Countless people across the UK have responded to job loss by learning a new trade, gaining industry-recognised qualifications, and starting afresh in a rewarding new role; a cliché it may be, but the assertion that 'losing your job is an opportunity' is often very true!

If you have recently lost your job - or if you are simply looking for a change - Access Training Academies can help you to start a new career as an electrician. Browse our Electrician Courses now, or contact us to learn more about the training programmes we offer.

This year, the United Kingdom has been facing its biggest skills shortage for a generation. There are huge talent gaps across a number of professions, including bricklaying and plumbing.

The scarcity of plumbers is now having large repercussions as we enter the winter months; not only are a number of construction firms having to cancel or delay new projects, a number of private firms are finding themselves unable to cope with the increased demand for plumbing maintenance and repair this winter. The country’s shortage of plumbers (combined with the increase in sick leave that’s to be expected at this time of year) is leaving older/vulnerable people without heating and hot water for extended periods of time.

In Sunderland this week, a diabetic pensioner went for 40 hours without heating or hot water because an emergency repair team was unable to cope with demand. It is reported that they had 10 emergency plumbers that were supposed to be working over the weekend; however, seven of the ten plumbers were off because of illness. This is not an isolated case, nor is it a regional shortage. This scenario is common throughout the whole of the United Kingdom.

The current skills shortage means that people who are willing to gain the skills to become a qualified plumber are getting heavily rewarded for their work. Fully qualified plumbers can earn between £1,200 and £1,800 a week, and because of the skills shortage, there is no shortage of work available. In short: there has never been a better time to enrol on a plumbing training course and gain the qualifications needed to become a professional plumber.

We at Access Training offer a large variety of trade training courses, from plumbing courses for people who have no or limited plumbing experience through to courses designed for professional plumbers looking to refresh their knowledge or to gain extra skills.

So, no matter where you live, what your circumstances are, or what your experience level is, we are confident that we have the perfect course for you.

Click here to view our plumbing training courses.

Tiling training

At Access Training, our aim is to provide individuals with the practical skills that will allow them to build upon their current abilities, or even form an entirely new career path!  As with all of our new career course packages, our tiling training courses offer a range of different starting points, allowing you to ensure that the training course you attend is suitable for your requirements, ambitions, and current skill level.

Listed below are the three different tiling training options that we offer at our facilities, ranging from household skills to trade professional level:

DIY Tiling Course

This course is targeted towards people who would like to carry out tiling jobs in their own home, but lack the knowledge or experience to do so. In time, you will be able to carry out any necessary jobs without the need to call in professionals, making this a long-term investment for home improvement enthusiasts. You will learn all the basics of tiling installation, as well as gaining experience in cutting tiles and forming patterns, allowing you to experiment with the more creative aspects of the job. Thanks to the flexible nature of our tiling training, you can also target specific units to ensure that the course is meeting your personal requirements, making it as rewarding an experience as possible. For those who find themselves wanting to learn more by the end of the course, there is also an option to sit an exam, which will stand you in good stead for more advanced training in the future.

Essential Tiling Course

This tiling training course is great for beginners, and like our DIY course, it can be tailored to suit the ambitions of the learner. Although it is suitable for people with no experience whatsoever, it's probably a better choice for people who are interested in progressing to a more advanced level in the future.  Once you have completed the training, we can recommend an appropriate progress route for you to follow; your further training could build upon the skills gained on this course, or it could involve learning and mastering another skill, contributing to a future career as an experienced trade professional.

Professional Tiling Course

If you have serious ambitions to turn tiling into your new career, this course will provide you with the skills and knowledge required to become a certified tiler. It's ideal for people who want to start from scratch and work their way up, but would also work well for individuals who have previous experience and wish to update their skills. Upon completion of the course, you will gain a City and Guilds Level 2 Diploma, allowing you to seek paid work and enabling you to train for an NVQ Level 2 qualification in the future.

Click here to view all of our excellent tiling training courses, or get in touch with us for more information.
Joining the Gas Safe Register is a rite of passage for all trainee gas engineers, but more importantly, it's a legal requirement for anyone who wishes to carry out gas installations in the UK. Unregistered individuals who work on gas appliances are breaking the law and may be prosecuted.

Court Gavel

One cautionary example is that of Michael Birch from St Austell in Cornwall. Earlier this week, Mr Birch was fined £2,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,000 after pleading guilty to breaching the Gas Safety Regulations and the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.

What did he do wrong?

Back in 2013, Michael Birch (who is not a Gas Safe-registered engineer) installed a gas boiler in a property in St Austell. The boiler - specifically the flue - was not installed correctly, which the homeowner noticed and reported to the Gas Safe Register. It eventually transpired that, after Mr Birch had finished installing the boiler, he had asked a registered gas engineer named Peter Hopper to 'sign off' on his work, which Mr Hopper did in spite of the unsafe state of the installation.

(Incidentally, Peter Hopper was also sentenced this week - he was fined £1,500 and ordered to pay £5,000 for illegally commissioning the work.)

All of this serves as a stern reminder of how important it is to join the Gas Safe Register before commencing any gas installations of your own. Unregistered personnel risk prosecution and hefty fines, but worse still, they risk compromising people's safety. Had the homeowner in this cautionary tale failed to notice the problems with their boiler, the story's ending could have been far grimmer than a mere fine.

How do I join the Gas Safe Register?

In order to join the Gas Safe Register and legally carry out gas installation work, you will first need to complete an ACS assessment. This is included as a component of Access Training's Premier Gas Course, which is open to candidates of all levels, including absolute beginners. More experienced individuals can undergo the assessment on its own.

Click here to browse Access Training's full range of gas training courses, or contact us to discuss the options we offer.

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