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Classrooms named in honour of shipyard legends

L-R: Frank Wilson, Paul Ethell (HR Director), John Harris, Linda Robson, Alan Robson, Jeannette Cole, Ian Cole, Josephine McCann, Malcolm McCann and Michelle Knott (Facility Manager)

Former ‘legends’ of BAE Systems Barrow shipyard have been honoured at an event held at the Submarines Academy for Skills and Knowledge.

Eight former instructors were invited on a tour of the academy and to view classrooms named in their honour.

Before retiring, they had amassed almost 300 years of experience, and trained thousands of tradesmen and women.

The guests – Ian Cole, John Harris, Joe Murphy, Malcolm McCann, Peter Jackson, Alan Robson and Frank Wilson – will be familiar to many employees across the shipyard.

The group, plus their guests, enjoyed a tour of the academy, which opened last autumn, and were presented with a commemorative print.

John Harris, who retired last March, commented: “That was a real ‘make do and mend’ training area, this facility is a complete transformation.”

Retired welding instructors Joe Murphy and Malcolm McCann were impressed with the examples of welding on display in the workshop.

Joe said: “It’s a fantastic standard of work for apprentices. I couldn’t have foreseen that the shipyard would ever have had a facility like this.”

The celebration was hosted by Human Resources (HR) Director Paul Ethell and Submarines Academy for Skills and Knowledge Principal Janet Garner who said: “It was an absolute privilege to host this visit, as many of those on the tour had been involved in the very early plans for our new academy, so for them to see the results of some of their early ideas was fantastic, as was their recognition of the quality of the skills the apprentices are developing in the academy.”

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