Apprenticeship programme launched at Bluestone to help encourage more people into hospitality in West Wales

West Wales’ tourism and hospitality sector will benefit from a new apprenticeship programme due to start this autumn at Bluestone National Park Resort, near Narberth in Pembrokeshire.


At least 10 apprentices are being taken on initially as part of a new programme launched by the Bluestone Academy. It is likely to increase this as part of a long-term commitment to the region’s hospitality sector.


Applications have opened for the Hospitality Apprentice roles that will provide a 12 month on the job training programme with the potential of leading to full-time employment. The programme has been developed by the Academy which has appointed training providers to oversee the delivery of the education elements.


The Academy was set up by Bluestone last year to enthuse people of all ages to pursue long-term careers in the region’s tourism and hospitality sectors. Bluestone itself employs more than 800 people.


Helen John, Academy Manager, said: “The tourism and hospitality sectors play a significant role in the West Wales economy, with many people and businesses reliant on it, including a significant supply chain.


“We have developed a dedicated prospectus for the apprenticeship programme, working closely with the training providers.  Each apprentice will be given an opportunity to work in a range of roles at Bluestone to discover the opportunities that exist.


“Alongside this they will undergo in-depth education and training, providing them with the skills and experience that will act as a foundation for their career in hospitality.”


Apprentices, aged between 16 and 24 years, will spend two months in six departments on a carousel basis in Accommodation Services , Guest Services​, Retail​, Front and Back of House​ within Food and Beverage, and Leisure​. The apprenticeship is a 12 month contract, which is 22 hours per week from Monday to Thursday.


More than 80 per cent of the course will be hands-on experience, with candidates learning different roles throughout Bluestone. Upon successful completion, apprentices will receive the industry recognised Hospitality Level 2 or Professional Commis Chef Level 2 qualifications, primarily designed to set them up for a career in the hospitality sector.


The Bluestone Academy has appointed Cambrian Training, Gower College and PRP Training as skills and training providers. They are also providing training leading to national qualifications for Bluestone’s other staff as part of a wider prospectus launched this month.


Each apprentice will earn a salary while they’re training and gain a nationally recognised qualification.


“They’ll be working with trained staff who’ll also pass on their skills and experience. In addition, each apprentice will receive the same benefits that all Bluestone employees receive, added Helen.


“The programme aims to develop the skills needed for hospitality workers in West Wales and while they’ll train and work at Bluestone, the skills they learn can easily be transferred to other roles within the industry in the area.”


Earlier this year the Academy appointed Neil Hillary as its Ambassador. Neil is working with community groups, schools and colleges throughout the area to deliver outreach programmes promoting high-quality courses, training and work placements within the industry, including Bluestone itself which employs more than 800 people. 


Applications have opened for the Hospitality and Commis Chef Apprentices programmes and application must be made by 29 August. Successful applicants will begin their roles in early September.


More details can be found at